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A Sun Bear in Trouble by Martin D. Hill is a sensitive introduction for young children to the issues of endangered species and their habitats. The author aims to inform his readers and through understanding to instil the desire to care for and protect the animals and find solutions to the problems. The book is illustrated by Iole Eulalia Rosa but since it's about the work of Lesley Small and the Sumatran Sun Bear Team and their efforts to build a Rescue and Conservation Centre, I would have thought that actual photographs of these amazing creatures and their magnificent habitat would have made a more compelling argument.
The story tells of Uca, a young female sun bear, who is taken from her mother by poachers. Rescued by the team, she is cared for at a safe location and we watch her as she gradually adapts to centre life. We are treated to a display of endearing behaviours, as well as mischievous antics, until she is ready to be moved to a larger enclosure with her new 'sister', Mei.
The fact sheets at the end of the book are useful, clear and informative but seem a little out of keeping with the rest of the book, which is aimed at a much younger reader. All in all, though, this is an enjoyable book and anything that raises awareness of the predicament of today's wildlife and habitats has to be a good thing.
This story addresses the issues that Sun Bears face in a gentle and careful manner that children can relate to. A Baby Sun Bear is snatched from her mum, deep in the rainforest of Sumatra. She cries out for help as she is driven away... One of many Sun Bears taken and caged each year, this little cub is in trouble. Can anyone save her?
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