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was it right or wrong to kill this bear?

(35 Posts)
WitchofScots Fri 14-Aug-15 19:05:00

A nurse who worked at Yellowstone National Park went hiking alone and without bear spray. He was attacked by a female grizzly bear and killed. The bear partially ate him, as did her two cubs. The bear has been killed and the cubs are being put into a zoo because it is park policy to kill bears who kill people.

Is it right or wrong?

Elllimam Fri 14-Aug-15 19:13:28

Poor man I hope he died quickly. I think they made the decision they had to make. The bear did eat someone and it's not fair to risk it happening again.

ThatBloodyWoman Fri 14-Aug-15 19:17:24

As dreadful as it is,he entered the bears environment unequipped.
Had the bear entered 'mans' environment,I would think differently.

On balance,I think its wrong,but that makes me seem very callous.

Floggingmolly Fri 14-Aug-15 19:19:42

Wrong, I think. He went hiking without proper precautions; and he worked there, he was hardly unaware of the dangers.

ThatBloodyWoman Fri 14-Aug-15 19:26:17

I think it'd be particularly wise,surely to take protective measures when there may be cubs (or when bears are emerging from hibernation).

She was surely only responding to the perceived threat she saw to her cubs,not acting as aggressor and entering populated areas to attack people.

tribpot Fri 14-Aug-15 19:28:15

I've told my cat the next time she brings a mouse in, that's it. She's for the chop. That should teach her.

Oh wait a minute - no it won't - because she's a cat. Killing mice is what she does.

A grizzly bear is a very dangerous wild animal. Gentle Ben is not real.

I feel very sorry for the poor man and his family, this is a terrible thing to happen. But the bear hasn't suddenly 'gone rogue' and started visiting the local cities eating people. It's a bear. I see no basis for it having been killed.

Queenbean Fri 14-Aug-15 19:32:03

The bear did eat someone and it's not fair to risk it happening again.

You're right, now they've killed this one, murderous bear, no one else will ever get eaten by a bear again. They're vegetarian, usually. Big fan of hummus instead of humans.

PigletJohn Fri 14-Aug-15 19:36:17

if it's killed and eaten one person, the decision is presumably based on the believe that it will kill and eat another.

Like it or not, humans tend to kill animals that seem likely to kill them (from mosquitos to pit bulls)

TheCowThatLaughs Fri 14-Aug-15 19:41:32

I don't think it's reasonable to kill the bear. Some people might laugh at me for saying this but I really feel for the orfaned cubs, who are now in captivity without their mum.

theconstantvacuumer Fri 14-Aug-15 19:41:38

At the end of the article, the spokeswoman says that if the attack had been defensive (wrt the cubs) then the bear might not have been put down. So, the bear was aggressive and, unusually, ate the poor man. It sounds like a danger to others.

CoogerAndDark Fri 14-Aug-15 19:47:30

How do they know it was aggressive? You hang out where bears hang out with Cubs and you can't blame a bear for doing what bears do.

GerundTheBehemoth Fri 14-Aug-15 19:52:02

I don't see why any grizzly bear wouldn't kill and eat a person, if it was hungry and a person happened along. Grizzly bears can kill moose, black bears and other large mammals after all.

CoogerAndDark Fri 14-Aug-15 19:56:36

How handy there was a zoo for the cubs.

theconstantvacuumer Fri 14-Aug-15 19:59:43

I don't know, there were no details of how they worked that out.

tribpot Fri 14-Aug-15 19:59:54

Looking at Wikipedia's list of Bear attacks in North America (as one does) - it's obviously usual policy to kill the bear after an attack (perhaps in true NRA style the argument is the bear should be armed to defend itself against the rangers?) yet this does not appear to have deterred the bears from continuing to kill humans. What is noted is that no attack has ever been recorded on a group of six or more humans - even though a grizzly clearly could take on a group of six humans unless they were armed. But they seem to have a fairly steady supply of people ignoring the advice not to hike in small groups.

WitchofScots Fri 14-Aug-15 21:12:24

I'm inclined to say it was wrong as well. He knew the risks, he went alone and undefended and at a time when bears have cubs. I don't want to be eaten by a grizzly bear (hardly likely where I live) so I don't walk where there are bears. I don't want to be eaten by a shark (a bit more likely where I live, but not much) so I don't swim where there are sharks.

prh47bridge Sat 15-Aug-15 09:38:20

How do they know it was aggressive

Apparently eating part of the body and hiding the rest is not normal behaviour for a female bear defending its young.

Mutt Sat 15-Aug-15 09:41:27

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

hackmum Sun 16-Aug-15 12:00:41

Crikey, you wouldn't catch me going within 20 miles of a grizzly bear.

Mammals with young are usually aggressive towards intruders, aren't they? Even cows have been known to kill humans when they (the cows) have calves with them.

Like TheCow, I feel sorry for the poor orphaned cubs. What did they do wrong?

tribpot's comment about the NRA reminds me of that Robin Williams line about the American constitution's right to bear arms: "Or is it arm bears?"

BarbarianMum Mon 17-Aug-15 22:46:53

I think they were right to kill it. Generally, bears do not kill and eat (let alone cache) humans -we are not their prey. But once one has discovered that humans make a tasty meal it is likely to continue exploiting this wonderful new food source.

Bear spray can be effective in certain circumstances and totally useless in others. It's certainly not a failsafe.

Tripot your analogy isn't very apt. A better one would be to consider what you'd do if your cat ate your next door neighbour.

Harvey000 Tue 22-Sep-15 11:03:42

I agree with most of these comments. It is the man's fault for entering bear territory unequipped.

The bear did not run into the city killing people, and it is in the bear's nature to protect her cubs - so you cannot blame the bear for 'murder' and it is completely wrong to have killed the bear.

prh47bridge Tue 22-Sep-15 17:09:01

it is in the bear's nature to protect her cubs

True but the evidence available suggests that she was not protecting her cubs. The bear ate part of the body then hid the rest. That is not normal behaviour for a bear protecting her young and strongly suggests an aggressive attack by the bear, not a defensive action.

OurBlanche Tue 22-Sep-15 17:13:42

As others have said, eating and caching humans is aberrant behaviour and the park has a policy based on evidence.

Twitterqueen Tue 22-Sep-15 17:24:52

It was the bear's home territory. The man would have known the risks (as a 5-times visitor to Yellowstone I'm very well aware of all the warnings that are provided, even though I'm just a UK tourist).

The bear should not have been killed IMHO.

nooka Sun 27-Sep-15 02:32:20

Where I live bears are common. We've had them in our yard and walking down our road. Mostly black bears very locally but grizzlies can be found not that far away. The advice is to be noisy and then bears will keep away (oh and we have rules about bear attractants too) but there are no restrictions on walking alone and very very few people carry bear spray.

If it is felt that an individual bear is a danger to the community then the conservationists will shoot them. They have tried relocation but apparently it really doesn't work at all well, so there's not really that much choice. A bear that decides people are prey is very dangerous, especially grizzlies.

Also while it's recommended not to hike alone in Yellowstone it's only a recommendation and carrying bear spray is entirely optional. Bear attacks are relatively rare so the idea that the chap who died was in some way negligent is I think a bit off beam. He was an experienced hiker, knew the park very well and was on an established trial. It was a really really sad incident all round, but also very unusual (8 deaths in 100 years from bears at Yellowstone).

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