from C.A.S.H. Committee To Abolish Sport Hunting

MI: Conservation Officer bitten by bear while releasing it from coyote trap

September 21, 2018

From Roxanne Werly,

CHIPPEWA COUNTY, Mich (WPBN/WGTU) -- A Conservation Officer with the Department of Natural Resources is recovering from a bear bite on the tip of one of his fingers.

The officer was responding to the Kinross area on Sept. 17 to help release the approximately 100 pound black bear that was caught in a leghold coyote trap.

The trap was legally set and the DNR was called by the person who set the trap.

According to the report, the officer arrived on scene, assessed the situation and felt he would be able to safely release the bear back to the wild by utilizing a barricade to isolate the bearís leg and release the trap from the paw.

During the release attempt, there was an unanticipated delay when it was discovered that the trap had sustained some damage to the release mechanism.

As the officer readjusted his position, the bear nipped at the barricade, and in the process, inadvertently bit the tip of the officerís middle finger on his right hand.

An official with the DNR said the officer was treated for the injury and released the same day from the hospital.

According to Acting Captain Peter Wright with the DNR Law Enforcement Division, itís not unusual to assist a trapper in removing an incidental catch from a trap, but it is not very often an officer is injured in the process. 

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