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Kosovo sanctuary helps brown bears fight heatwave with frozen fruit, cool pools

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Workers at a bear sanctuary in Kosovo have come up with creative ways to keep their twenty brown bears cool as temperatures near 104 Fahrenheit this week.

The bears’ pools are regularly topped up with fresh water and their keepers hurl fruit and vegetables into the water to encourage the animals to swim. They also place frozen fruit and vegetables they dub “ice creams” up in the trees, where the bears find them in just a few seconds.

“The temperatures are very high and their fur is very thick and it is not easy for them,” said Taulant Hoxha, from the bear sanctuary.

WEATHER RESEARCHERS UNLEASH FLEET OF DRONES THAT SAIL DIRECTLY INTO EYE OF HURRICANE

brown bear swims

A brown bear cools off in a pool at the bear sanctuary on July 16, 2023, in Kosovo.  (ARMEND NIMANI/AFP via Getty Images)

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“We have 20 bears and each of them has their own favorite fruits or vegetables… so it depends on their preferred food what we freeze for them.”

The 20 bears living at the sanctuary, which is managed by Four Paws International, were rescued from private owners or from restaurants where they were kept as attractions for guests in spaces as small as four or five square metres.

The sanctuary has far larger enclosures imitating a natural habitat.

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