SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, Calif. — Wildlife officials say they believe someone illegally separated two bear cubs from their mother and left the young animals along a Northern California highway.

The California Department of Fish and Wildlife says its investigators are processing evidence discovered with the cubs March 9 along California Route 96 near Yreka.

Game wardens say they couldn’t find the mother, so they took the cubs to be evaluated by wildlife veterinarians who determined they were healthy.

The cubs were then transferred to Lake Tahoe Wildlife Care, a rehabilitation facility in South Lake Tahoe, on March 12.

In a Facebook post, Lake Tahoe Wildlife Care said this was the earliest it had ever received first-year cubs.

“The cubs who we will call ‘Blaze’ and ‘Yreka’ weighed in at 4.14 lbs and 4.38 lbs respectively.”

Investigators from the department are seeking tips from the public. They said there are only a few hundred wildlife officers spread throughout California and they need help from residents to combat poaching.


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