A grizzly bear that attacked and partially ate a hiker last week has been euthanized by officials at the Yellowstone National park. According to ABC News, the grizzly bear, an adult female was euthanized because the animal was responsible for attacking and killing a hiker from Montana. The bear had eaten parts of his body and had hidden the rest.
According to Amy Bartlett, spokesperson for the Yellowstone National Park, it is not normal for grizzly bears to attack and eat humans and then hide the body. Fearing further such attacks from the bear, officials decided it was best that the animal be euthanized.
“If a bear consumes an individual, it’s not allowed to remain in the population. It’s not a risk we’re willing to take.”
The euthanized bear had two cubs as well, both of which would be transferred to a local zoo. In fact, had it not been for the zoo, the cubs too would have been killed along with their mother.
Meanwhile, reports also add that the two cubs also fed on the body of the 63-year-old hiker, who was later identified as Lance Crosby. After his body was discovered, an autopsy confirmed that he was attacked by a bear. Crosby, a nurse at the park’s medical clinics, was walking alone without a bear spray when he was attacked by the grizzly bear. His body was discovered by park rangers last Friday. The bear had attempted to hide his body under dirt and pine needles. Following tests, officials were able to identify the bear that was behind that attack. The bear and the cubs were soon captured, and after DNA analysis of the hair samples collected near Crosby’s body, it was deduced that the female bear was indeed behind the attack.
The female grizzly bear weighed over 250 pounds and was estimated to be over 15-years-old. Following the confirmation of the DNA tests, the bear was quickly euthanized. They sedated the animal before firing a captive bolt into its skull.
The Inquisitr previously reported said that park officials considered euthanizing the bear after they received the results of the DNA tests. The decision to euthanize the bear was also met with protests after it was revealed that the hiker was not carrying a bear spray or had taken any precautions before venturing into known bear territory. However, park officials say that they had no option but to kill the animal because it was not seen as a defensive attack to protect its young. Had that been the case, the bear would not have been euthanized.
This is not the first time a person has been attacked and killed by a grizzly bear in and around Yellowstone. Since 2010, there have been six fatal bear attacks in the park.
[Image via Wikimedia Commons]