Moon Bear

A  documentary on the plight of the moon bear (Asian black bear) has won the 2012 audience favourite ‘Best Educational Value’ film at the China Ya’an International Panda, Animals and Nature Film Week. The documentary called simply ‘Moon Bear’ was created by three independent film-makers, Elsa Xiong Jun Hui, Chen Yuan Zhong and Tu Qiao, who spent four years producing the film, visiting bear bile farms undercover.

In countries across Asia, thousands of bears live a life of torture on bear farms, so that their bile can be extracted and used in traditional medicine to cure ailments ranging from headaches to haemorrhoids. Bears are confined in cages which vary from agonisingly tiny “crush” cages to larger pens, all of which cause terrible physical and mental suffering. – Animals Asia

The documentary shows evidence of moon bear farms (which are legal in China) breaking many regulations and receiving tip-offs to ensure they are not found out be the authorities. The film is not gory and does not excessively show animals in pain, preferring to focus on the reasons that the bear bile trade and the problems that have been faced by those trying to abolish the industry.

The documentary can be viewed below, it is 45 minutes in length, recorded in Mandarin with English subtitles and definitely worth a watch.

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