Baby Bear Shot Dead after People Feed Him to Take Selfies
The life of a young, black bear came to a tragic end due to too much interaction with humans, including people who took selfies with it.
According to the Washington County Sheriff's Office's (WCSO) Twitter account, attempts were made to get a baby bear back into the woods and safely away from people visiting the Scoggins Valley Park near Henry Hagg Lake in Oregon.
Several photos of people taking selfies with the bear were seen by others, encouraging the behavior. People would give the bear food like trail mix, sunflower seeds, and cracked corn.
Deputies are working to get this bear cub near Hagg Lake to go back into the woods... please stay away from the area near Boat Ramp A. pic.twitter.com/tI8m5yTbyk— Washington County Sheriff’s Office (@WCSOOregon) June 13, 2019
By the time the authorities came in — after receiving two calls relating to a black bear sighting — the animal was no longer running off upon immediate contact. Still, they managed to shoo it back into the words on Thursday.
When it returned the next day, a decision was made that the animal needed to be put down. People were outraged by the act, with many wondering why they couldn't have trapped it and put it into a zoo or sanctuary.
The wildlife experts from the Oregon Dept. of Fish & Wildlife say that wasn't a viable option in this case. We are saddened by the outcome for this bear.— Washington County Sheriff’s Office (@WCSOOregon) June 14, 2019
The WSCO responded that "that wasn't a viable option" and pointed to the case as proof that "humans shouldn't feed wild bears." They were met with more disapproval, with one person even calling their response "barbaric."
Other people attacked those who left food out for the bear, habituating the bear and making him a greater danger to humans. Rick Swart, who works in the Oregon Department of Fish, said the risk was too great after that.
For every human that left food out for this bear, his blood is in YOUR hands.— T. Ⓥ🌱🐽🐾 (@sweeteuphoria1) June 17, 2019
"This is a classic example of why we implore members of the public not to feed bears. While the individuals who put food out for this bear may have had good intentions bears should never, ever be fed."
Unfortunately, yes. This was a tough decision the wildlife experts at the Oregon Dept. of Fish & Wildlife had to make for the safety of everyone. Relocation wasn't an option in this case. Humans shouldn't feed wild bears. It's a very sad situation.— Washington County Sheriff’s Office (@WCSOOregon) June 14, 2019
Last year July, another bear was shot to death for attacking a human, but there was still a lot of backlash online following what happened. It happened during a cruise near the Spitsbergen island in Norway.
Norwegian police defend the actions of cruise guards who killed a polar bear that had attacked and injured a crew member, but activists say it was wrong to let tourists encroach upon polar bear habitat. https://t.co/Qm53FkWNk4 pic.twitter.com/IvLbXzxIP7— Star Tribune (@StarTribune) July 30, 2018
When the MS Bremen cruise ship landed on the Arctic archipelago, a cruise ship guard stepped onto the island and was attacked by a polar bear. The animal was shot in self-defense.
The German Hapag Lloyd Cruises Company were forced to explain themselves online when people got upset at the killing of the native creature in its own territory.
"Let's get too close to a polar bear in its natural environment and then kill it if it gets too close". Morons. https://t.co/FEPt0sYOtF— Ricky Gervais (@rickygervais) July 29, 2018
Comedian and activist Ricky Gervais condemned the act and pointed out the irony of people going to the bear's natural habitat only to have to shoot it because it got too close.