Bear

A bear sighted May 18, 2014. (Nick Sisson photo)

The Alaska Department of Fish and Game reported an incident in which a person shot a bear that had gotten into the dumpsters near Woody Way.

The Alaska Wildlife Troopers are investigating the probable bear shooting and trying to find the alleged shooter.

“Right now the Alaska Wildlife Troopers are looking into it and trying to look for the individual who supposedly shot the bear,” said Nathan Svoboda, wildlife biologist for the Alaska Department of Fish and Game.

“Someone probably did shoot the bear at the dumpster and the bear ran off in the woods leaving a blood trail. The wildlife troopers to my knowledge followed it for a little ways then stopped (because of darkness),” he added.

The troopers and ADF&G so far believe the eyewitness’s story and observed the blood trail from the bear.

While troopers have not yet confirmed it yet, it is likely that the shooting was illegal.

“If they weren’t defending their life or their personal property then it would be illegal for them to shoot that bear,” Svoboda said.

The potential danger of having people shooting at bears in town worries Fish & Game.

“I don’t think the wounded bear so much is a public safety concern as people shooting bears in town somewhat unnecessarily. That we would prefer to have done by trained professionals such as law enforcement or Fish and Game employees,” he said.

Svoboda added that he is concerned about the fact that the number of bear sightings in town has not diminished with the nicer weather.

“I have been optimistic the number of bear sightings in town would diminish with the nice weather and the increase in available natural foods. However, it appears the lure of trash and human foods is much too tempting for a few unconditioned bears,” Svoboda said.

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