Another Bear Euthanized In The National Park
Great Smoky Mountains National Park officials say the bear that ripped into a tent in the Elkmont Campground Sunday morning has now been euthanized. The bear was captured on Monday. A family of five were sleeping in their tent at Elkmont, with their dog, when a black bear ripped into the tent at around 5:20 a.m. Sunday morning. After gaining access to the inside of the tent, the bear scratched a 3-year-old girl and her mother. The father was able to scare the bear from the tent and campsite. According to Chief of Resource Management Lisa McInnis…The bear weighed approximately 350 pounds, which is not standard for this time of year, suggesting the bear had previous and likely consistent access to non-natural food sources and Sunday morning the bear was likely attracted to food smells throughout the area, including dog food at that particular campsite. National park officials say that now is the peak time for human and bear conflicts because natural food sources, like berries, are not yet available. Therefore Bears are attracted to the smell of food and garbage in places like campgrounds and picnic areas. Officials say that camping in bear country is inherently risky and that campers need to follow food storage regulations…plus bear safety guidelines.