Another person has been bitten by a bear in Colorado, this time just north of Pagosa Springs.
According to Colorado Parks and Wildlife, a pair of hunters – one male and one female – were lying in wait for a black bear when they spotted one near a pond. The woman, who owned the hunting license, shot the bear in the right shoulder. The wounded bear scurried away. The hunters waited about an hour before following the blood trail into the wilderness.
As the unlicensed male hunter crossed over a log, he accidentally stepped over the “unseen” bear. At this point, it latched onto his hand. The man tried to move away from the wounded bear, but it then latched onto his leg.
The female hunter approached, fatally shooting the bear and freeing the man’s leg from the bear’s mouth. The incident took place at about 7:30 a.m. on Wednesday, September 4.
According to Colorado Parks and Wildlife, the legal harvest didn’t go as planned for the two hunters. The pair acted appropriately by seeking medical attention immediately and notifying wildlife officials of the incident.
After being notified, wildlife officials tracked down the bear and began the skinning process. The meat was determined to be unfit for human consumption due to the time-lapsed and warming temperatures in the area.
The pair of hunters walked out of the wilderness on their own and drove to a nearby hospital where the man was treated for injuries to his hand and leg. The female hunter did not suffer any injuries.
The bear’s skull was sent to a lab to test for rabies and other diseases. The tests came back negative and the skull was returned to the pair of hunters.
The male bear was considered to be a sub-adult. It was estimated to be around 2 to 3 years old and weigh 125 pounds, according to Matt Thorpe, area wildlife manager for CPW. According to a report from the Durango Herald, the average harvested bear weighs between 200 to 250 pounds.
Fall rifle season for black bears began on September 2 and will run until September 30, 2019. For more details on big game season dates for 2019 in Colorado, click here.