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Judy Kearns spends her days taking care of orphaned cubs.

As owner of Black Bear Rescue Manitoba, Judy and her husband work directly with Conservation Officers who receive calls about cubs that are running around without any signs of their mother.

In the most recent case, a momma bear was shot and killed.

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"In my opinion, this is a crime against nature," said Kearns. "Those three cubs rely on their mother greatly. They were still nursing and needed their mom. It's such a terrible thing to do."

Three cubs were then left to fend for themselves and would have had very little chance of surviving at just five months old. That's where Black Bear Rescue came in to save the day.

Conservation Officers delivered the three cubs to Judy, who has a rehabilitation centre set up in Stonewall. The cubs now have a safe place where they will be fed and they have the room to grow.

Judy is happy to report that the three cubs are in great spirits and are doing very well. They will be released in the fall.

"We work in conjuction with Natural Resources Department to choose good release locations that are remote and are good bear territory," offered Kearns. "We make sure it is a spot that has plenty of food and what not. We transport the bears there and release them."

In all, Kearns says she currently has 14 bears under her care at the centre. While she never had thought of getting into this line of work, it has now become her dream job.

"I'm glad to be doing this, it is a priviledge to have this opportunity," ended Kearns. "I'm a big animal lover. There was a need and I hated hearing about little orphan cubs that never had an option and in many cases, died because of that."

If you ever spot orphan cubs while you are out and about, you can call the Manitoba TIP line at 1-800-782-0076. You can also call Judy at Black Bear Rescue at 204-461-4320.