ST. LOUIS (AP) — Wildlife officials have relocated a black bear that had wandered into a St. Louis suburb and drew a crowd of hundreds curious to see the out-of-place animal.
The has been popular on social media pages for weeks as it plodded hundreds of miles from Wisconsin, through Illinois and briefly into Iowa before wandering into Missouri. Wildlife officials said they were spurred to take action over the weekend when the bear — dubbed “Bruno” on social media — found itself in the Wentzville city limits and corned between Interstate 70 and Interstate 40. Word of the bear in the suburb spread, and a crowd of about 400 people gathered to see it.
“He just kept making his way farther west, which makes sense,” Amanda Good, Missouri state director of the Humane Society of the United States, told station KMOV. “I think he’s out of his normal range for a bear to go out looking for a mate, but we do know Missouri has black bear population south of I-44, mainly in southwest Missouri.”
Fearing for the safety of the bear and the public, conservation officers decided Sunday to tranquilize the bear and moved it to an undisclosed area outside of St. Louis.