Oregon Zoo says goodbye to one of the oldest Malayan sun bears - KPTV - FOX 12

Oregon Zoo says goodbye to one of the oldest Malayan sun bears

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Vivian, a 30-year-old sun bear at the Oregon Zoo, was among the oldest in the world of this threatened species. Photo by Michael Durham, courtesy of the Oregon Zoo. Vivian, a 30-year-old sun bear at the Oregon Zoo, was among the oldest in the world of this threatened species. Photo by Michael Durham, courtesy of the Oregon Zoo.
PORTLAND, OR (KPTV) -

Vivian, a beloved Malayan sun bear, who was among the oldest in her species, was humanely euthanized at the Oregon Zoo Thursday after a decline related to her advanced age, officials said.

Vivian was born on October 10, 1985 at New Orleans’ Audubon Zoo. She came to Portland the following year.

According to the Oregon Zoo, Vivian lived far beyond the median life expectancy for her species.

The median life expectancy for female sun bears in zoos is 23. In the wild, sun bears seldom live past the age of 25.

At the age of 30, she was the second-oldest sun bear in any zoo accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums.

"Sun bears are shy by nature, but Vivian was always very confident," said Sara Morgan, the zoo's lead sun bear keeper. "She's the one visitors would see most of the time - stretched out on a sunny branch or snoozing inside a hollow log with her belly hanging out. When we put out treats for her, she'd grab them, roll over on her back, and lie there eating like Winnie the Pooh."

Jody, Vivian’s female companion, became more independent as Vivian started showing her age, according to keepers.

"Over the next year, we will be looking to find Jody a new home and a potential companion," zoo curator Amy Cutting said. "We'll speed up that timeline if she seems to be having difficulty adjusting to life without Vivian."

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