Pennsylvania Black Bear Attack Injures Two Young Children
Two young children were injured by a black bear attack in their driveway Monday, according to Pennsylvania Game Commission (PGC).
A five-year-old and a one-year-old were playing when the bear attacked them. The injuries were deemed non-life threatening and the children were treated for bites and scratches at a local hospital, according to a Facebook post from the PGC.
PGC has initiated an investigation into the incident, but suspects that the attack was triggered by an unknown circumstance. PGC has set up two bear traps in the surrounding area and will euthanize the bear as a precaution. DNA testing will be used to ensure it is the same bear involved in the attack when it is caught.
“Pennsylvanians are advised at all times to keep their distance from bears, which are strong and fast creatures,” PGC said in a press release. “Getting a bear’s attention by vocalizing or waving at it, often is enough to make it move off.”
Normally, bears in the state tend to avoid human contact and seldom engage in aggressive behavior. “When attacks do occur, it often involves a situation where a bear is cornered and not given an opportunity to flee, or is triggered by a dog confronting a bear, and the dog’s owner becoming involved,” PGC wrote.
Feeding bears is illegal in Pennsylvania because it can diminish their natural fear of humans. Even unintentional food sources like birdfeeders, compost bins, trash cans, or unattended grills can attract bears, PGC wrote.
“This is an unfortunate incident and I’m relieved to hear their injuries aren’t severe,” PGC Executive Director Bryan Burhans said.
About 15,000 black bears live in Pennsylvania and there are thousands of non-confrontational encounters.