Out for an evening walk with her dogs, Susan Chalfant, 54, was attacked by a bear near her Longwood, Fla. home on Monday night according to a Dec 4 UPI report. The bear attacked Chalfant’s face.
Chalfant was able to run to the home of a neighbor for assistance. The neighbor called 911 and reported that “She's pleading for quick, quick help. She's in severe pain."
Chalfant remains hospitalized from injuries though no one would divulge the nature of or severity of her injuries out of respect for her and her family.
The attack is believed to have been perpetrated by a black bear according to officials. Karen Parker of Florida Fish and Wildlife says the attack is unusual, however. She explained that bears tend to be elusive, preferring to avoid contact with humans unless they have been previously fed or habituated. Their normal response is to run away.
Because no one witnessed the attack, Parker says they are still unclear as to what exactly happened. Chalfant has not yet given a statement of events to officials.
Authorities set traps in the neighborhood where the attack occurred and on Tuesday night they captured a 100-pound female yearling bear. They do not believe it is the bear that attacked Susan or if know if the cub is related to the attacking bear. DNA will be used to help solve that mystery.
Officials are now using the cub as bait, hoping to lure the mother out into the open. Mike Orlando, a wildlife official said catching bears is difficult and they are doing all they can to make certain things are done properly.
Roughly 3,000 black bears live in Florida where encroaching land development is squeezing into their turf. Several bear attacks have occurred in the state in recent years. Because they are protected, hunting or feeding them is illegal.
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