Bears Wandering Around Town

For the past week a bear — or possibly two bears — have been wandering around Charlottesville, mostly around Rugby Road. On the 22nd, a bear was cornered by police officers, but got spooked when somebody took a flash photo of it, so an officer shot it twice. The bear spotted since then has shown no sign of being injured, leading to speculation that there may be two separate bears. A wildlife biologist is on call, and it’s hoped that the bear(s) can be tranquilized and released outside of the city. Elizabeth Nelson has the story in today’s Progress. If you see the bear, please call police, and look after him on behalf of Aunt Lucy. No flash photography, please.

7 thoughts on “Bears Wandering Around Town”

  1. "The bear spotted since then has shown no sign of being injured, leading to speculation that there may be two separate bears."

    I fervently hope there are two bears (seperate or not) because if there aren`t we have one very poor shot on the police department (this assumes the officer would not have fired unless he had a good, clear shot). Then again I don`t know the type of load or how much a bear can take – which leads me to speculate "Why am I posting this?"

  2. Why did he shoot the bear? Bears are totally harmless, it will run from people for days on end if you keep chasing them. Even a tiny puppy could scare a bear away.

    We need to figure out ways to drug and transport these animals. It seems to happen fairly often. Weren’t there a couple bear stories in the last few months?

    I dont think the officer missed, an animal with a gunshot wound doesnt "appear" injured. After all, it is a small hole. Dont be suprised if you find that bear dead of an infected GSW.

  3. What do C-ville cops carry, 9mm or .40 pistols? People who hunt bears with pistols do so with .44 magnums and even then you need to hit a vital area. Bear hunting is normally done with a high-powered rifle with a big-game load, and yes, a bear shot with a 9mm hollowpoint probably wouldn’t appear injured until many days later. This time of year the animal’s going to have a thick layer of fat and muscle which the bullet might not even penetrate.

    Poor bear, but I guess the officer didn’t want to take a chance on someone being hurt and him being blamed for it after the fact.

  4. Well Bruce, perhaps I`m wrong, but somewhere I read the bear was shot with a shotgun — so, dependent upon the load, it could have sustained quite damaging injuries.

    As I stated, range , field of fire , and load (00 buckshot smarts and can ruin ones` entire weekend) the bear could have sustained significant damage.

    All this, of course, rests upon my memory of a shotgun in use as opposed to a pistol.

  5. Once I fired normal buckshot (not 00) at a computer monitor, and it didnt even crack the glass, it just put a bunch of little pits in it.

    A shotgun doesnt penetrate as well as a handgun or a rifle. I wouldnt expect it to take down a bear.

    P.S. The solid 1oz slug put a hole in the computer monitor the size of your head! I highly suggest you try it, if you have the means.

  6. Well, as I said, I don`t know what loads the cops are carrying but they probably have a choice of several and I believe the local police forces are up-to-date enough to have what they need.

    Some police shotgun loads will pierce armored doors and other heavy cover. For instance, the shotgun (12 gauge) saboted APS slug. This darted slug will punch through a brick wall, car sides , and heavy doors.

    But again, I don`t know what the load was and it will be of little use and somewhat foolish to shoot up my monitor on in such a test.

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