With its dark, beady eyes and round ears, her thick, dark fur, looks like Maya to Cuddle. But veterinary nurse Sandra Ebbeskamp remains at a distance and the bear lady Maya, behind the protection grid.

“The bear is a Predator. He would always defend his territory,” says Ebbeskamp – I have no doubt this friendly woman. Maya knows what she has to do now, to get a reward. The she-bear might want to try out with their 200 pounds of body weight on all fours directly in a metal box that has you scared yet not too long ago, really scared.

Immediately Ebbeskamp gives the animal the confirmation that it has done its thing: it pushes on a small device in their Hand: The clicking sound of the Slap on the Butt or like the praise is like a acknowledge: “You Did good” – but for the animal in its meaning, much clearer than anything else. And then of course there is the reward: raw chicken meat. Even if bears are mainly plant eaters – it seems to taste.

Three brown and two black bear in bear forest in the International Bear Federation on the edge of the lower Rhine for months for an unusual move: For years, the Association has included in its enclosure bears who have previously suffered in small cages. Now the lease is running out the contract for the anhold bear forest in Isselburg. At the latest, in September, the animals of North Rhine-draw-Westphalia to Schleswig-Holstein. The German animal protection Association shall, in its animal protection centre pasture field. And now the animals are training to befriend, with the moving boxes.

“imagine, you are locked in a completely unknown vessel in which they are transported for eight hours and it wobbles and makes noise,” says the behavioural biologist and bear expert, Patrick Boncourt in Weidenfeld significantly. Bancourt is familiar with the bears, the animal protection Association is a long-standing cooperation partner of the bear forest. Fear and panic would be a bad travel companion.

The approach of the animals to the boxes is a slow process, the rewards are important. Maya went in the box, the Keeper makes a clicking noise, and the bear knows it’s a reward. But no animal is like the other. Also in the case of bears, it is Cautious and Learning from all walks of life, as the 25-year-old Maya. Earlier, she was in Lithuania, the attraction of a restaurant. On a shield next to your shockingly small cage, visitors were invited to buy cakes, ice cream and Cola for the bear.

What torture for an animal that needs so much space: The European brown bear normally has a space of 100 square kilometers. In Germany, the brown bear is extinct, but 13 years after the launch of the brown bear Bruno in upper Bavaria, a bear groped recently in Tirol in a photo trap.

For Maya, and the four other bears at the move about 500 kilometers to the North. Your new home is not prepared yet. Also, the animals themselves need time. First you need to learn that the slider can go to their crate time down to the box. This takes time and especially trust.

Reuters topics in this article bear animal Keeper Cutie Isselburg, North Rhine-Westphalia, Schleswig-Holstein, wife