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Officials euthanize bear caught roaming Baton Rouge; animal had been relocated previously

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BATON ROUGE  - A bear captured by authorities Tuesday was killed because it had become "too reliant on food from human sources," authorities said.

On Monday, multiple witnesses first reported seeing a bear wander along streets in North Baton Rouge and the Scotlandville area. At least two more people reported bear-sightings early Tuesday morning on Rosenwald Road, near an apartment complex.

A picture from Monday morning shows a bear in the Alsen Park area, and around 7 p.m. a viewer provided video taken near the intersection of Blount and Progress roads showing a bear crossing a field with a basketball court in the next yard.

Some witnesses reported the animal appeared to be wearing a type of collar.

Baton Rouge Police were dispatched to the area, and they contacted The Department of Wildlife and Fisheries for assistance. 

LDWF confirmed to WBRZ that it had captured the 3-year-old Louisiana black bear late Tuesday morning. Later that afternoon, the department said the animal had to be euthanized because of its "dangerous behaviors."

Officials said the same bear had been previously captured in St. Mary Parish and relocated to a remote central Louisiana LDWF Wildlife Management Area.

“Young male bears can sometimes be successfully relocated due to their innate instinct to seek their own home range as they disperse from their mothers,’’ LDWF Large Carnivore Program Manager Maria Davidson said in a statement. “When a bear has learned to access human sourced food associated with residential areas, it can cause a behavior progression that becomes a human safety risk. This bear demonstrated dangerous behaviors in his search for human sourced food, therefore the decision was made to euthanize him rather than attempt to relocate him again.’’

Officials said residents should never approach or feed wild bears.


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