In Fairbanks, Alaska, a man from the northeast area of the state fatally shot and killed a polar bear that had strayed south of its usual habitat.
According to the KToo Public Media, Jim Hollandsworth of Artic Village, encountered the polar bear in early January as the bear tried to get into his cabin, When he went to check a trapline, he saw evidence that a bear had been near his residence.
“Tore up one of the snow machines, flipped it completely over,”Hollandsworth stated.
The following morning, Hollandsworth met the bear face to face. His dog barked, and as he stepped out of his cabin, the bear raced towards him. The man grabbed his rifle and by the time he turned around, the bear was already entering his cabin. That’s when he shot the young female bear at “point blank range.”
Polar bears are federally protected with the exception of self-defense killings.
The bear’s killing was reported to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Services, who manage the polar bears, but because of the government shutdown, no officials have responded.
It is not known why the bear ventured more than 100 miles south of the Beaufort Sea coastline where they usually stay and make their dens for their cubs. Once in awhile, however a female will venture farther inland to build her den. Could she have been an inexperienced bear who just went the wrong way and became lost? Whatever the reason, the death of a protected and dwindling species is tragic.
Home at last