Many visitors fed him food and following this, the friendly bear cub started getting too close with the humans.
In a truly shocking incident in every sense of the word, wildlife officials euthanized a friendly young black bear after the animal became too friendly with humans. The incident came to light after the Washington County Sheriff's Office tweeted photos of the bear cub last week and asked people to stay away from Hagg Lake in Scoggins Valley Park. As reported by KOIN.
The super-friendly bear was said to be familiar with humans and many people often took selfies with it when he was alive. Many regular visitors also fed him food and following which the bear started getting too close with the humans.
According to an official press release from Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, people had fed the bear cub and left behind trail mix, sunflower seeds, cracked corn, and other food. It is also to be noted that it is illegal in the state of Oregon to scatter food or garbage for wildlife.
"What we found was a number of potential food sources including one that was right on the shoulder of the road, a large pile of trail mix with peanuts, and stuff like that around. This is a classic example of why we implore members of the public not to feed bears," Kurt Licence, assistant district wildlife biologist for the department, mentioned in the release. "While the individuals who put food out for this bear may have had good intentions bears should never, ever be fed."
Deputies are working to get this bear cub near Hagg Lake to go back into the woods... please stay away from the area near Boat Ramp A. pic.twitter.com/tI8m5yTbyk— WCSO Oregon (@WCSOOregon) June 13, 2019
The bear was shot down after Washington County Sheriff’s Office and the Oregon Department of Fish received multiple reports of bear sightings in that area. And to add to that, the authorities also noticed many photos of people taking selfies with the bear on social media.
Ever since people got to know that the young bear was euthanized, many have condemned the actions of the officials and the people who fed the bear. One of them is Jennifer Harrison. "I know in the area we've seen evidence of bears and cougars," said Harrison, who visited Hagg Lake with her family. "My neighbor was driving somewhere in the area and took a picture of a bear sitting by the side of the road."
People ignored the rules to snag selfies with a young bear. Police had to euthanize him. https://t.co/OP1mJt2HQ1— The Washington Post (@washingtonpost) June 19, 2019
Harrison regrets that it was because of humans that this bear cub had to die. ".... they got bear killed and that's not OK," she said. "They tried to do something they thought was a good thing, but it ended up getting the bear killed so please do not feed the bears."
This is not the first time such an incident has taken place where humans unnecessarily caused the death of another animal. A flamingo had to be put down after a child threw a rock inside the animal's exhibit at Miller Park Zoo in Bloomington, Illinois. The rock had accidentally hurt the bird and the authorities had to put it down because the injuries sustained by the flamingo were severe. As reported by CNN.
And let's not forget perhaps one of the most infamous incidents involving zoo animals was in 2016 when a lowland gorilla named Harambe had to be shot down at the Cincinnati Zoo after a child climbed into his enclosure. The event had resulted in massive outrage and even paved the way for viral content on the internet.