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Authorities kill brown bear in Eagle River -- and again warn residents to secure trash

  • Author: Matt Tunseth
  • Updated: June 11, 2019
  • Published June 11, 2019

A brown bear that was getting into trash in Eagle River was killed Tuesday morning by authorities.

It was the second aggressive brown bear killed this summer in the municipality of Anchorage by the Alaska Department of Fish and Game and Alaska Wildlife Troopers, according to area management biologist Dave Battle.

Authorities began getting calls about the bear Monday night. Battle said in one Tuesday morning incident, a woman cleaning up trash a bear had scattered on her property had a dangerously close encounter with the bruin.

“She was cleaning up and a car honked its horn and she looked around and (the bear) was right behind her,” Battle said.

The woman was unharmed, but Battle said the situation could have been grim.

“It showed no fear of people, it came pretty close to a couple people, and in those cases we need to remove the bear -- brown bears in particular,” he said.

The bear was shot at around 9:30 a.m. near Lee Street, Battle said.

In May, a brown bear was shot on the Anchorage Hillside after it tried to get into a chicken coop. Battle said two black bears have also been killed this summer in defense of life or property, both in the Eagle River area.

Battle said people began to report the aggressive brown bear to authorities on Monday night.

He said Eagle River is a bear hot spot -- Fish and Game shot a brown bear last year not far from the site of Tuesday’s incidents -- and again reminded people to be responsible with their garbage. Tuesday was trash day in the neighborhood, and Battle pleaded with people to not set garbage out until the morning of collection and to consider getting a bear-resistant can.

“If we could just get one message across it’s to get people to secure their trash,” he said.

It’s against municipal code to leave trash out overnight in the municipality. Anyone caught violating the regulations can be fined $75 for a first offense. The Department of Fish and Game can also issue $310 citations for negligent feeding of wildlife.