Alaska: 1,000 Pound Polar Bear Rescued From Fishing Net

A large 1,000 pound polar bear trapped in a fishing net was rescued thanks to the concerted efforts of a group of people from Kaktovik in Alaska.

According to King 5 News, the polar bear was found entangled in a fishing net on a small barrier island in the Beaufort Sea off the Alaska coast on Saturday. The locals who saw the trapped bear informed the U.S. Geological Survey and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service about the trapped animal. Officials were quick to respond and hours after the information about the trapped polar bear was received, it was freed from the nets. It took several hours for the group to successfully free the bear which was later confirmed to be a large male.

To ensure the safety of the people who were attempting to rescue the trapped bear, officials had to sedate the animal. A dart was fired from a helicopter to first sedate the bear and then local residents reached the bear and prevented it from drowning as it fell unconscious. Once the bear was completely sedated, biologists started work to untangle the animal. They were able to do so without much delay and the bear was soon freed. After its rescue, the bear was also found to be uninjured and deemed fit to be released back into the wild.

The official Facebook page of the U.S Geological Survey posted a few photos of the entangled polar bear and a detailed account of how they went about untangling and eventually rescuing it.

Polar bear recued

The Polar bear is among the largest species of bears currently found on Earth and was, in 2008, listed as a threatened species under the Endangered Species Act (ESA). Current estimates put the number of polar bears left in the wild in the vicinity of between 20,000 and 25,000.

Incidentally, the news of this polar bear getting entangled in a fishing net comes just a day after the Inquisitr reported about the case of a blue whale that was trapped in a fishing net off the coast of California.

[Image Via U.S. Geological Survey Facebook]