'Meatball' still in a cage; bear's move to Colorado on hold

The fate of the Glendale bear remains in flux as officials from California and Colorado sort out the nuances of a wildlife law in the Rocky Mountain state that has put any move on hold.   

The meatball-loving bear who frequented the Glendale and La Crescenta–Montrose areas and saw his popularity explode over the last five months was tranquilized and trapped last week, taken to a sanctuary in Alpine and transferred to a quarantine cage.

It was to be his temporary home, but on Wednesday that was where he remained.

The animal, affectionately known alternately as Meatball and Glen Bearian, was scheduled to be moved this week to a large sanctuary northeast of Denver that had accepted the transfer.

"The bear is not going to Colorado," Andrew Hughan, a spokesman for the California Department of Fish and Game, told The Times. "Facilities are no longer allowed to accept wild animals" under Colorado law, he said.

However, Pat Craig, executive director of the Wild Animal Sanctuary in Colorado, said officials were misinterpreting the statute. He said a 2006 Colorado Parks and Wildlife law says that no wild animals, such as the Glendale bear, will go to sanctuaries inside the state.

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-- Matt Stevens, Los Angeles Times

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