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An orphaned bear cub named Tamarack was rescued a year ago from a wildfire zone in Northern California. The poor cub’s paws have been badly burned in the blaze. Tamarack received treatment for his injuries at the wildlife care facility and quickly bounced back on his feet. Clearly he was feeling all better seeing that, to his rescuers’ surprise, he managed to escape back into the wild.

Fortunately, the care facility quickly discovered that Tamarack is still alive and well after finding an adorable video as proof.

Since Tamarack made his clever escape from the centre last summer, wildlife enthusiast Toogee Sielsch has tracked his movements on trail cameras which have been placed all through the forest near his home. From that vantage point, it’s clear the orphaned bear cub has exceeded the odds.

And according to the footage, sweet Tamarack is more than simply surviving, he’s thriving. Recently on of the trail cameras captures the sweetest footage of Tamarack having the time of his life in a large puddle. However, it got even cuter when Tamarack’s appeared to be in the  company of a toy bear he’d evidently found and befriended.

It’s not clear where Tamarack managed to find the bear or where it came from, but clearly his new toy bear is bringing him tremendous joy. Seeing them together made Sielsch smile. “I thought how it was almost a perfect example of the playfulness of not only young black bears, but all of them,” said Sielsch.

He continued: “It makes my heart very happy to have watched his progress against all odds as an orphaned and healing cub of the year, now yearling. It shows just how tenacious wildlife is when it comes to survival.”

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