While some were looking for seams in a supposed costume, others were adamant the creature in question is "a real bear, dude."
China’s Hangzhou Zoo had to go on the defensive this week, insisting their sun bears are actual bears … and not humans in bear suits.
The wild speculation began last week after a video shared to Chinese social media had some questioning whether the black sun bear seen in the footage was the real deal. Many were confused by the bear’s behavior, saying it looked more like that of a person when it stood up on its hind legs — while others called attention to the folds on its body.
While some commented on the video saying the animal was “a real bear, dude,” others were still unconvinced.
To quiet doubters, the Zoo issued a statement from the perspective of the bear in question, a female named Angela, on Sunday.
“Some people think I stand like a person. It seems you don’t understand me very well,” it read. “When it comes to bears, the first thing that comes to mind is a huge figure and astonishing power… But not all bears are behemoths and danger personified.”
She went on to say her species of bear is actually “petite” and “the smallest bear in the world,” before adding that she’s “dating” a male bear named Dalu but “wants to take things slow.”
Staff members also reportedly said, due to the heat, nobody would be able to last “more than a few minutes” in a fur suit “without laying down” — adding that Angela is “definitely not a human” and because the zoo is government-run, “that kind of situation would not happen.”
The speculation has been good for business, apparently, as Chao News (via Reuters) reported visitors to the zoo have gone up 30% since the video started making headlines.
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