The search for a poacher is on after a bear was found dead in the front yard of a Colorado Springs home on Friday.
Residents of Cheyenne Mountain Estates, a community 46.5 miles north of Pueblo and 80.1 miles south of Denver, are mourning the death of a 400-pound black bear by an unknown shooter. The case gained national attention because this particular bear, while typically dangerous to humans, was revered by locals, who say it was a welcome member of their neighborhood and posed no threat.
Alice Tinder, a resident, spoke to reporters about the grisly discovery of the dead bear in the front of her yard — mere steps from the entrance to her home. She credits her son with finding the animal’s corpse. Tinder immediately called local police and reported the possible poaching.
“I looked outside and it was laying right out there, 10 feet from the road. We see him here all the time. They don’t really hurt anybody. That’s terrible. I think that’s terrible. It wasn’t hurting anybody.”
Nick Bonck echoed Tinder’s sentiments about the dead bear. He lives directly across the street from the front yard where the animal was shot and killed. He claims to have seen the wild bear “hundreds of times.” Moreover, he said a benefit to living in the region is to coexist with the wildlife.
“It’s really disappointing because he was such a part of our lives up here. That’s the reason you live up here on the mountain…to live around the animals. For somebody to take a shot at him like that, it’s disheartening that somebody would do that,” said Bonck.
Last month in an unrelated story, a Lazy Glen resident was snoozing on the deck of his home when he pet what he thought was a neighborhood dog. When he realized the animal had his leg in its mouth, he woke up and learned it was a black bear, as the Inquisitr wrote.
“Whether or not Peter Rizzuto was aware of this fact when he awoke from an afternoon nap and realized his leg was in the mouth of a bear isn’t certain, but the bear taking Rizzuto’s leg into its mouth definitely has gotten the attention of Colorado Parks and Wildlife officials.”
While locals claim the bear found dead in the front yard of Tinder’s home was harmless, officials warn that bears are wild animals, which are typically wary of humans and keep their distance. Still, its death is shocking to neighbors in the area.
Investigators say the killing/poaching of a bear is “considered a felony, which carries a fine up to $20,000.”
[Photo by: Wikimedia Commons]