SOUTH LAKE TAHOE (AP) — Wildlife officials say they believe someone il­le­gally separated two bear cubs from their mother and left the young animals along a Northern California hig­hway.

The California De­part­ment of Fish and Wildlife says its investigators are proc­essing evidence dis­cov­ered with the cubs March 9 along State Route 96.

Game wardens say they couldn’t find the moth­er, so they took the cubs to be eval­uated by wild­life vet­er­inarians who de­ter­mined they were healthy.

The cubs were then trans­ferred to a re­hab­il­it­ation facility in South Lake Tahoe.

Investigators from the de­part­ment are seeking tips from the public. They said there are only a few hun­dred wildlife of­fic­ers spread throughout Cal­if­or­nia and they need help from residents to combat poaching.

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