New Mexico is Hiring ‘Professional Bear Huggers’

Bears may not be considered the most cuddly of animals, but a new job posted by the New Mexico Department of Game and Fish is searching for people brave enough to spend their days cuddling the cubs.

The job listing is looking for “professional bear huggers,” a.k.a. Conservation Officers, who will be required to “hike in strenuous conditions, have the courage to crawl into a bear den, and have the trust in your coworkers to keep you safe during the process.”

The posting on Facebook, which has received over 2,700 reactions, displays adorable photos of current Conversation Officers cuddling the tiniest of bears that were taken out of a den in Northern New Mexico as part of a research project.

The role will also require a Bachelor of Science in a related field to wildlife conservation and sciences, including “biological sciences, political science or law enforcement, natural resources conservation, ecology, or [other] related fields.”

Those selected for the position will be put through the New Mexico Department of Game and Fish Recruit Training Program and complete training through the New Mexico Law Enforcement Academy. There’s also a physical fitness test.

“Not all law enforcement field work is this glamorous, but we would love for you to join the team where you can have the experience of a lifetime,” the Department wrote in its social media post.

Other duties for the job include educating the public about wildlife in the area, participating in research, helping capture “problem animals,” and investigating damages, among other responsibilities.

Those who feel up for the challenge are encouraged to apply through March 30.

According to New Mexico’s official state website, the American Black Bear was chosen as the state’s official animal on February 8, 1963.

It’s estimated there are 850,000 to 900,000 black bears in North America.