In Benton, TN, Authorities hunted Friday for a black bear that picked up a 2yo boy in its mouth and mauled his mother, critically injuring them both, before killing the 2 yo child’s older sister.
The attack came yesterday afternoon in the Cherokee National Forest in southeastern Tennessee. The family was at a pool below Benton Falls on Chilhowee Mountain when the bear attacked.
Witnesses told authorities the bear picked up the 2yo boy in its mouth while the mother and other visitors tried to fend it off with sticks and rocks. The mother and the boy were critically injured and flown to Erlanger Medical Center in Chattanooga. When the bear attacked, the 6yo girl ran away. Rescuers found the girl’s body about 100 yards down the trail from the falls. A bear was standing over her. Authorities are using dogs and have set traps baited with honey buns and doughnuts. Wildlife officers planned to put out more traps Friday morning.
I cant imagine the sickening fear when this mother saw her 2 yo son snatched up by the jaws of a black bear. Now, not only is she most likely fighting for her life or suffering from horrible injuries, her 2 yo son is in critical condition, and her 6 yo daughter was killed my this bear. This is very unusual for black bears to attack, but they do. In N. MI where I was raised, all of my family is still there, black bears are abundant in the forests and cedar swamps. I’ve had a couple of close calls with bears and not while it was bear hunting season.
Black bears are highly underestimated, they are very agile and very fast, they can run 30 mph, and are quicker than lightening climbing up/down a tree or bolting/charging. As a kid, berry and mushroom picking, we always made tons of noise and were on the constant lookout for bear evidence. Mainly, because my mother was either the one in charge or accompanying, she was terrified of bears, and worried one of us would get mauled. Of course, she was a bit nuerotic and scared of a lot of stuff-but thats a whole OTHER story.
What would make a black bear attack these people? I do not know. Sometimes an old bear, a rouge bear, or a sick bear will attack for no reason or seek out unconventional food sources. Mama bears with cubs are usually the most aggressive ones, protecting thier young. That is understandable by nature and the reason for making tons of rackett in the woods, to let yourself be heard. This stops a suprise encounter where the mother bear might choose to fight over fleeing. But, from the news story, I gather the bear charged, snatched up the 2yo. These kinds of bear attacks are horrible.
I do know one thing for sure as I type, this bear is going to die, if Authorities havent already killed it yet, they soon will. And, it is only right.
entire story found here:
The mother and boy were listed in critical condition in a Chattanooga hospital but are both expected to recover. The boy suffered head wounds, from being bitten, while the mother had eight puncture wounds to the neck and too many others to count on her body. Officials havent been able to talk to the mother because of her injuries. The family is from Ohio.
There have been only 56 documented killings of humans by black bears in North America in the past 100 years. Current population of black bears in North America is around 750,000. In May 02, a woman was killed by a black bear near Gatlinburg when she walked on a trail near a Smoky Mountains campground.
The entire story here: