Sun bear

The smallest of bears is slowly vanishing from tropical forests of Southeast Asia

Rushenb

Even though small, it still has mighty powerful jaws that it uses to tear into trees and get to the burrowing insects underneath tree bark. Sun bears are one of the rarest species of bear in the world and are only found in tropical forests, where they spend most of their time in the trees.

Because of their shy nature and remote habitat, gathering conservation data about them is difficult. Their habitat is being rapidly destroyed by deforestation. Moreover, like bears in Asia, they are also hunted for their other body parts and gallbladders for medicinal purposes, despite scientists proving that they have no medical value at all. Cubs are also captured to be sold in circuses and pet trade markets.

Distribution

Country
Population est.
Status
Year
Comments
Bangladesh
2016
Brunei
2016
Cambodia
2016
China
2016
Yingjiang (Yunnan province)
India
2016
Indonesia
2016
Laos
2016
Malaysia
300-500
Official estimate
2018
Myanmar
2016
Singapore
Official estimate
EX
Extinct 2008
Thailand
2016
Vietnam
2016

Recent updates

Oct 2021: The Sun Bear Conservation Centre (SBCC) in Malaysia announced that it had successfully rescued and released two sun bears into the wild. The bears, named Boboi and Kitud, had been orphaned as cubs and were rehabilitated at the SBCC before being released into a protected forest reserve.

June 2021: The Wildlife Reserves Singapore (WRS) announced that it had successfully bred and released three sun bears into the wild in Cambodia. The bears, which were bred at the WRS’s Singapore Zoo, were released into a protected forest in Cambodia as part of a collaborative conservation program.

Anything we've missed?

Help us improve this page by suggesting edits. Glory never dies!

Suggest an edit

Get to know me

Terrestrial / Aquatic

Altricial / Precocial

Polygamous / Monogamous

Dimorphic (size) / Monomorphic

Active: Diurnal / Nocturnal

Social behavior: Solitary / Pack / Herd

Diet: Carnivore / Herbivore / Omnivore / Piscivorous / Insectivore

Migratory: Yes / No

Domesticated: Yes / No

Dangerous: Yes / No