Bear euthanized in Kingsbury, second in week |

Bear euthanized in Kingsbury, second in week

Staff Reports

For the second time in a week the Nevada Department of Wildlife has had to euthanize a black bear as a threat to public safety in the Lake Tahoe basin.

A yearling female bear, about 18 months of age, was trapped during the evening hours between Thursday night and Friday morning in the Kingsbury area of Douglas County.

The trap was set earlier last week after a bear in the area, fitting the description of the bear caught Friday, had entered two different houses in search of food. The bear was euthanized as a threat to public safety. It is the fifth bear euthanized in 2015 as a threat to public safety and the second this week. A 9-year old male bear was captured and euthanized Aug. 25 in Incline Village as a threat to public safety.

“We hate having to do this but a bear entering a house is a dangerous bear and the Nevada Department of Wildlife is obligated to manage the situation,” said NDOW Public Information Officer Chris Healy. “We have an obligation to public safety that we do not take lightly. People have called and asked us to move the bear but we cannot move a bear that we know to be dangerous, that just would not be prudent.”

Healy advises that people in “bear country” have a special obligation to not attract bears to their property. “Garbage that is carelessly managed and left available to bears is what creates situations like today (Friday). If you want to keep bears alive and wild then you need to not attract them to your property where they become habituated to human sources of food.”

The bear that was euthanized Friday was a yearling female that had first been captured in the same area last year as a cub. It came from a litter of three (a female and two males), born in the winter of 2014 to a female who is now 19-20 years old. The sow was first caught in 2004 as a 9-year old and has taught multiple litters to become habituated to garbage and other sources of human-provided food.

The yearling euthanized Friday is the third of her offspring to be euthanized for breaking into homes. Two of the sow’s cubs from previous litters have also been euthanized in similar situations.

A 9-year-old, 450-pound male bear captured Aug. 24 in Incline Village was tranquilized and put down on Aug. 25.

The bear had become a nuisance to Incline homes and businesses, Healy said, by becoming more aggressive in its search for food by breaking into cars and trash cans.

The same bear was captured in 2008 in Incline Village, Healy said, and was tagged and released back into the wild.

The Kingsbury bear is the fifth killed by the state since the beginning of 2015 because of safety reasons, and the fourth trapped in Douglas County.

Two were trapped near Gardnerville on April 1 and Aug. 13, and a third near Genoa on July 17.

In 2014, only one bear in the region was killed for safety reasons.

Since 1997, the department has killed 107 bears that were deemed nuisances or safety threats to the public, Healy said.