Animal lovers throughout the country were saddened this week.
A 400-pound bear was found dead on Sunday in southeast Missouri in the Current River.
While the necropsy has not yet been performed, some locals believe they know how the bear died.
When the body of the bear was discovered, it appeared as though it was caught on some underwater roots.
As far as they could tell, the bear appeared to have drowned.
While the death of the bear is tragic, it did spur some awareness for campers.
If You See a Bear…
With kids now out of school in many places, camping season is in full swing.
In various parts of the country, bears can find their ways into a camp and wreak havoc.
For that reason, state animal agencies are encouraging people to follow several bits of advice if the encounter a bear to ensure that they are able to get out of the situation without any harm coming to them:
1. Keep a Clean Camp
Make sure you wash all dishes and cookware immediately after use. Bears have an excellent sense of smell, so this will help ensure they do not catch the scent of food.
You should also make sure all garbage is put into sealed cans or dumpsters, not thrown into the woods or the fire.
2. Store Your Food
Food should be immediately stored in a container, then put into a cooler.
If you are traveling in a camper or RV, put the food containers indoors when possible. If that is not an option, it is recommended to hang food from trees to keep it out of reach of the bears.
3. Be Noisy
Bears do not want to run into people, so make your presence known.
When you are hiking or in camp, make sure there is enough noise to keep the bears away. Talking loudly or playing some music should do the job.
4. If a Bear Finds You…
Don’t panic! It is important to move very slowly and back away from the bear.
If the bear has an escape route, it is very probable it will take the escape rather than the confrontation.
If the bear decides he wants to hang out, loud noises, such as banging pots and pans as well as shouting, should get him to run away.
If you are attacked by the bear, they suggest you fight back.
Use anything available to hit the bear and go for the nose and eyes.