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RIDGMONT, England – A sloth of North American black bears was recently treated to a relaxing afternoon on the water at the Woburn Safari Park in England after recent heavy rain created a small lake within their enclosure.

So, please. Bear with us. You’re about to read some embearissing bear puns.

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Staff came up with the idea to keep the bears entertained after the lake formed and noticed one of the park’s swan boats was waiting for new pedals.

“So, we had the idea of turning this into interesting enrichment for them,” said Tommy Babington, Deputy Head of the carnivores section of the park.

The swan boat was then placed on the lake with the hopes that the bears would find the new addition beary interesting.

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Keepers said they were delighted to see the four younger cubs, named Harvard, Maple, Colorado and Aspen, named for their North American origins in the wild, head right over to the swan boat.

Babington said the bears were “immediately intrigued” and “wasted no time in investigating the swan paddle boat.”

Woburn Safari Park shared photos and videos of the bears discovering their new friend on the water and showed them taking some time to take in the sights and paws and reflect on their short lives so far.

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One of the photos shows a cub getting comfortable on the boat with bearly any room for its brothers and sisters.

“It was great fun for visitors to see them climb on board,” Babington said. “We love devising new ways to provide food, scent and habitat enrichment that stimulates their natural foraging behaviors.”

The park says the young sibling black bears, two males and two females, spend a lot of time foraging, play fighting, eating and sleeping.

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The park said that bears are naturally very curious animals, and keepers will encourage that behavior with different kinds of activities for them to help keep their minds and bodies active.

While it may be a “less conventional approach” to keeping them stimulated, the park said “it certainly was a hit.”

And the story of the bears is quickly going viral after the park shared a video of the bears enjoying their time at the newly formed lake on TikTok.



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