It’s not every day you see a bear in a hammock, especially not in your own back yard!
But that’s exactly what happened on Thursday when a Daytona Beach resident, Vincent James, went into his back garden to hang out.
What he saw when he arrived there was definitely a big shock, as he stumbled upon the black bear: “He got in the hammock like he was a tourist or something,” said James.
Rafael Torres, who snapped the now viral picture of the bear in the hammock, was standing about 60 feet away from the bear which, he said, stayed in the hammock for about 20 minutes. Other residents in the area said they saw the bear ripping through garbage cans and knocking over bird feeders on Thursday.
So yeah, the picture is cute and what’s the harm? A bear using your hammock for a little down-time, so what?
Well, as you can imagine, these big cute cuddly bears also have a pretty sinister side as a woman from Florida found out back in April when a similar black bear attacked her and dragged her onto a driveway.
Authorities have long warned residents not to engage with the bears, which often move in packs of five or more, and certainly not to feed them! An 81-year-old woman was arrested in February for feeding dog food to bears on her property.
Generous as she was for regularly dishing up 18 bowls of the dog food to the bears, wildlife officials said it was not a good idea and was in fact illegal. Even though she was warned on multiple occasion to desist from feeding the bears, she ignored those warnings, claiming the animals would starve to death without her.
So the moral of the story people is: Black bears in hammocks are really cute to look at in pictures but don’t approach or feed one if ever you find one chilling in your back yard.