An Alaska man was injured this weekend after getting too close for comfort with one wild bear. Officials are claiming the bear was “pretty much goaded” into attacking the man on Saturday after the unidentified individual allegedly willingly fed the wild animal barbecue meat.
According to a report from the Associated Press, via ABC News, the man was attacked by the bear near Eklutna Lake Campground. A spokeswoman for Alaska State Troopers, Beth Ipsen, said the man was possibly intoxicated during the attack. Reportedly, the male located the animal during a bike ride north of Anchorage, where he allegedly offered the bear two pieces of meat leftover from a church event; the animal soon went “ballistic.”
A spokesman for the Alaska Department of Fish and Game, Ken Marsh, said the male was found injured and covered in blood at a nearby campground. “He wasn’t terribly coherent. He was unsure of where the attack actually happened,” said Marsh, who claimed the bear wasn't located by officials nor do they believe it is a danger to others. “The bear was pretty much goaded into this,” he said.
The male, who was treated for puncture wounds and scratches at a local hospital, could face charges for illegally feeding wildlife, according to Ipsen. The incident is still under investigation with authorities; there were no reported witnesses to the attack.
According to the Alaska Department of Natural Resources Division of Parks and Outdoor Recreation, bear attacks aren't common despite their reputation for having unpredictable behaviors. "I've seen people do stupid things to bears," said John Hetchel, a biologist with the Alaska Department of Fish and Game, who claims that most bear attack injuries are 95 percent human initiated. "I've seen people throw rocks at a grazing bear from two feet away just to get a better picture,” he said.