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Illinois hunting and fishing

Bureau County black bear captured

February 04, 2009 at 11:36 AM

NEPONSET — A black bear that had been photographed multiple times roaming Bureau County has been captured and moved to a zoo near Moline.

The approximately 200-pound animal was first seen west of Sheffield in late June and has been repeatedly spotted in the months since, most recently in mid-January southwest of Buda.

The bear was found again Tuesday, apparently hibernating in a drainage ditch near Neponset - roughly 10 miles northeast of Kewanee - where conservation police and wildlife experts tranquilized the animal for transport to the Niabi Zoo in Coal Valley.

The LaSalle News Tribune reported that the bear was found sleeping by a farmer who was driving a four-wheeler through a field.

“It was laying out there in the ditch, about a quarter mile off the road,” said Illinois Conservation Police Sgt. Robert Frazier, who was on the scene of the capture. “It was asleep, hibernating. We walked up to within 10 feet of it and darted it.

“It was real smooth and without incident,” he said.

The IDNR and conservation police used trapping equipment on loan from the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources to remove the bear.

The Niabi Zoo is a U.S. Department of Agriculture licensed facility that is permitted to possess bears, according to the Illinois Department of Natural Resources. The bear was in good health when it arrived at the zoo, where it will receive any necessary veterinary care.

The IDNR said in a release about the capture that the animal is suspected to have been in human care before its release or escape, though an investigation is under way to officially make that determination.

Biological samples have been taken from the bear for testing, to reconcile whether the specimen is wild or captive-bred.

“Who knows, maybe we can say we have bears in Illinois now,” Frazier said.

According to a DNR press release:

Officers from the Illinois Conservation Police consulted with federal, state and county wildlife and law enforcement agencies to formulate a plan of response to the bear’s presence. After reviewing several options, officials decided it was best to attempt to take the bear alive and place it in an approved facility. Upon arrival at the facility the bear was in good health and will receive proper food, shelter and veterinarian care. An investigation is underway to determine the bear’s origin.

 

Your CommentsComments :: Terms :: .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

I’m also glad someone didn’t shoot it. I though it was kind of cool having a black bear in IL. that wasn’t stocked by the DNR. I’ll miss that “ole boy”!

Posted by Marc Anthony on 02/04 at 12:52 PM

Why cant they just leave it alone?  I mean its suppose to be there.  Why does it need Rehab?  was it on drugs?

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 02/04 at 02:43 PM

the earlier article stated that this bear could legally be shot in illinois at any time.lets face it as much as most love the idea of having a bear around,someone would have shot this bear in a new york minute,capturing him was the only way to save his life,now lets get some laws in place to protect species that aren’t common to illinois.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 02/04 at 02:55 PM

bass,“get laws in place to protect species that arent common to illinois”...That is a VERY BAD idea. Good luck getting those laws lifted after the species have begun to take over and in need of thinning out.

I’m glad to see the bear will be moved and unharmed…to bad it couldnt stay in IL., like at the Brookfield Zoo.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 02/04 at 04:07 PM

i dont know you can get a task force together to kill off a nearly harmless animal like a whitetailed deer… surely you could get the laws lifted on a plague of bears or cougars or aligators smile

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 02/04 at 04:49 PM

HARMLESS whitetail deer? where do you live clintharvey, downtown Chicago? in the last 22 years living where I do in So Il, I have planted over 100 trees in my yard, I have a total of four (4) left alive that have grown to a size that the deer cannot harm, they either eat them or the bucks shred them.
there needs to be more taken during the season, and a longer season.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 02/04 at 05:24 PM

ok… sorry they eat your trees that you fail to put in protective tree growing gear im sorry. And im in southern IL too.  And i do not consider them rubbing your trees in your yard to be harmful.  They make things to protect your trees… 100s of things… just look up tree guard online. If you live in the country and expect to not have to be tolerant of wildlife… its your own fault sorry

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 02/04 at 05:54 PM

i suprised they didn’t auction the bear off and sell more bear tag’s to outfitters…....lol

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 02/04 at 06:19 PM

Well, he goes to a better place, that is, if he is restocked to one of the wilderness areas located in the Shawnee National Forest.  After all, there were bears there before the government came in and booted out all the landowners (aka taxpayers).  They have bears in Kentucky you know, and bears do know how to walk across a bridge.  That bear deserves better than being locked up in a zoo the rest of his life.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 02/04 at 06:44 PM

I was told the bear would be relocated to a more suitable surrounding’s. A rehab place for animals or a zoo sucks for this bear. They should relocate it to Northern Wisconsin or Canada. I think if the bear was hibernating in a drainage ditch it was best to move him, it would of only taken a short amount of time and some idiot would have shot him. I can remember 10-15 years ago a big horned sheep was roaming around Baker park golf coarse in Kewanee and it was real cool, he wasn’t harming anything or anybody but some dip stick shot him just for the fun of it. The same thing would have happened to this bear in time..

Woodsmith I would think if I was going to the time and expense of planting 100 trees I would have gone a little further and protected them DUH!!!  You probablly moved into a deer’s banquet area and a place where they love fresh trees, imagine that they ate them.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 02/04 at 07:44 PM

It would have been nice to leave the bear there.  However, someone idiot probably would have shot him/her.  I guess the bear will be relocated where bears really can be shot.  I think a plan needs to be developed.  What if Bears continue to wander in Illinois and try to re-establish?  They should be let to re-establish.  There should be laws to protect these animals.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 02/04 at 08:04 PM

1.) The bear was in good health.
2.) Mother Nature sure has a way of taking care of herself.
3.) Bald Eagles were all but considered gone in Illinois for a while..hmm refer to #2.
4.) Shouldn’t be that hard to make laws to protect a species that use to live in Illinois before humans! hmm refer to #3
5.) Who says humans have the right to take a bear that is in the wild (in good health) and put it in a pen? hm refer to #2. Who became Mother Nature? I didn’t see it on the news????
6.)Whats to say there wasn’t more than one bear in Illinois and they were trying to re-establish in IL.?
7.) Don’t get me wrong I love to hunt. I was brought up to enjoy Mother Nature, respect her and take care of our natural resouces! This is why Illinois DNR laws should be easier to change so “some idiot wouldn’t of shot him!” I would love to see a bear walk under my tree stand in IL. That would tell me that we are doing something right and Mother Nature is letting us know! Make some laws and let them live in the wild and establish again in IL. Just my two cents! REFER TO #2

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 02/04 at 09:14 PM

Sounds like some of you guys would like to see black bears return to Illinois. Do you feel the same way about cougars?

Honestly I feel like I’m stuck here in the midwest, and I’d just as soon live in Wyoming or Montana, but given the chance, I’d welcome hunting bears and lions in Illinois.

Posted by Henry Holt on 02/04 at 09:42 PM

woodsmith…sorry to hear about your trees. I would be more then happy to take care of that problem for you (deer problem that is). After we thin them out a little (bow only I prefer but not against shotgun)I would be happy to help you replant your trees.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 02/04 at 09:43 PM

Holt..I would be happy to see cougars come back. We would have to protect them first. I know someone will slam me about them eating the deer heard, but if they are meant to be they are meant to be. Where I live (Mapleton IL) there have been people talking (not me) about seeing cougars. Like I said if it was meant to be it was meant to be. Let them live until we have a population to hunt!

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 02/04 at 09:48 PM

has anyone thought that it may have been an outfitter illegally bringing in this bear to his area? to bring in more hunters? Just a thought, although many possibilities.  what kinda stumps me is if it had come from wisconsin, no one seen it from their to buda? and what would make this bear stay around that area for that long? considering that it was late june when the sightings occured.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 02/04 at 10:30 PM

bowhnter…you ever thought that a bear like big bucks move at night….and being black I doubt that anyone would of spotted it. I HOPE THAT THIS IS A WILD BEAR and we are all surprised!

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 02/05 at 12:20 AM

To this date has anyone said that their pet bear is missing???????????????? Because if I had a healthy 200LB bear I would claim my pet!

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 02/05 at 12:23 AM

Mother Nature! Enough said….there is probably more than one just like the cougars that we don’t have in IL.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 02/05 at 12:25 AM

There are all kinds of ways the bear could have gotten hear.  It could have crossed the 20 or so interstates or went under bridges and made it to IL.  It could have also been a tame bear that someone raised till it was old enough to fend for itself and let it go.  I doubt… an outfitter brought it down here to let people hunt it smile

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 02/05 at 01:35 AM

I know exactly why it was in our great state. I think he became aware of an open senate seat and wanted to apply for the position. However, like so many of us, he quickly fell in love with the beautiful row-crop vistas of northern IL and decided to take up a life of agriculture.

I’d like to think that he’d be followed by many more, but I don’t think there are too many bears as ambitious as he or ones willing to put up with IL politics and acres&acres;of empty corn fields in the winter.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 02/05 at 06:57 AM

“I’m glad to see the bear will be moved and unharmed…to bad it couldnt stay in IL., like at the Brookfield Zoo.”  The Niabi Zoo is in Coal Valley. Near Moline in Illinois.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 02/05 at 03:01 PM

I have tried several different deer repellents, they seem to work for a while, then the next thing you know, they don’t, a wire cage works until the tree gets too big, then the bucks shred it after you have to take the wire guard off, and yes they do kill them, bucks have killed almost all of those I have lost to deer, I have trouble even growing sweet corn, electric fences work for a while until the deer tear them down, they run through them, there are just way too many deer.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 02/05 at 04:20 PM

Woodsmith where do you live? I am sure you came to the right place if you need someone to thin out your herd! Maybe you should try growing a different kind of tree. Also try hanging dryer sheet or irish spring soap on them when there little, it works.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 02/05 at 04:29 PM

fultoncobuck, there are around 10 deer or so killed within a 1/2 mile radius of my house every year now for several years, it doesn’t seem to help, seven years ago a doe ran through the yard with her leg busted, we started seeing her quite often, I had several chances to shoot her, (she bedded down in my sweet corn also), I did not, I wanted to see how she did, out of the six years we watched her,( her right foreleg was bent up) 2 years she had twins, 3 years she had triplets, and 1 year she had quads, she is the only one I have seen with so many at once, she must be gone, we haven’t seen her for over a year now, as interesting as it was to watch her, I am glad the rest of them don’t have so many.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 02/05 at 04:41 PM

You would have thought they would have taken it the bear to Wildlife Prarie Park.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 02/06 at 08:08 AM

Woodsmith, If you cared at all about that animal you should have shot it. Leaving a hurt and wounded deer like that only brings in other creatures like coyotes that you really do not want. Although I guess that it is good she had more deer to increase the chances that those of us in counties with low populations wil get a shot soon. Unless you live somewhere to close to others with no woods around you shoudl think about letting some bowhunters help with your situation, or take up the sport yourself.
The black bear is making a big comback throughout the US. In fact I beleive that there are some eastern states that just removed them from the endangered species list and re-opened, on a controlled basis, the season for bear. Just be glad it wasn’t a brown bear.
There are to many pros and cons for or against cougars, bears, bighorn sheep and the like. Two of the three of these are not truly indigenous to illinois they live in the mountians and prefer that. I know of quite a few hunters near effingham that have pictures of a courgar that was supposedly recently hit by a farmer. the jury is still out as to whether this animal is real or not. they are scared to get into their stands till after the sun comes up becasue of this animal. I think that having these animals will decrease the population of course but will ruin the hunt for us dedicated hunter, or dedicated but not so successfull hunters like me. Since this has grown into a topic about non-natural animals being brought into our ecosystem how about the asian carp. they are ruining the fishing for many along the Illiois river especially in Havana.I will be awaiting the remarks so that I can laugh at the attempted jibes at my intelligence.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 02/06 at 08:55 AM

the first time I saw the doe I was in the house, she came through the yard with several other deer, I did not have an opportunity to shoot her until the next year, you could not tell there was a problem with her unless she was standing still or walking, when she ran she stayed right with the rest of the herd.
Irish Spring soap and softener sheets do not work all of the time, tea bags don’t work all the time, I have heard that growing sunflowers works, they eat my sunflower plants.
I have bow and shotgun hunted deer for over 40 years, but I can’t keep them all out of my yard.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 02/06 at 12:40 PM

Well maybe the powers that be could get a female bear and bring the male black bear and the female down here around Winkle Illinois so they could live with the cougars that Illinois don’t have.  I just don’t understand how most all of the residents in this area have seen cougar or seen plenty of sign of cougar and yet the IDNR folks keep denying their presence.  Go figure.  I would absolutely love having black bear down here in Southern Illinois.  All God’s creatures that were here when the first white men came should be brought back here as intended.  Of course I know that would go over like a ton of bricks with the great and powerful insurance company Gods.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 02/07 at 12:27 AM

Les see, i go to sleep with a belly full of corn and wasted deer meat and bam i wake up doing life in prison with no parole.Somebody would have shot the beer this i have know doubt,but could we not have moved it to the Shawnee Forest where there are all ready six bears with tracking collars living.Live in the zoo or quick death if these are the only choices the bear may have chose death.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 02/09 at 05:19 AM

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