Argentinian Polar Bear No Longer Destined for Winnipeg

A polar bear being housed at the Mendoza Zoo in Argentina is no longer a candidate to be transferred to Winnipeg’s Assiniboine Park Zoo.

Zoo staff had been working with officials in Argentina to bring Arturo to the city, citing it would be in the animal’s best interest.

Strict guidelines regarding specific medical records dating back to a minimum of three years prevent Arturo from being imported to Canada.

“There are very strict regulations that must be met to bring an animal into Canada,” said Don Peterkin, chief operations officer with the Assiniboine Park Conservancy. “These regulations are in place to ensure the health and welfare of animals and animal-related industries so without the proper health records in place it’s simply not possible to obtain the permits required.”

Zoo officials will participate in a Skype meeting on Friday to assist in the assessment of Arturo’s health. They will also provide recommendations for improvements and have offered to send a member of its veterinarian team to Mendoza in the near future.