Bear bowls man over

A man is licking his wounds after allegedly colliding with a black bear in Coquitlam River Park Tuesday evening. 

The encounter occurred about 6 p.m. near the river, according to conservation officers.

A couple living in a tent about 20 metres from the river had come into contact with the bear several times over the previous two days as it searched out food stored at their campsite. 

When the bear claimed food from beside the tent Tuesday, pulling it into the forest, the man pursued the bruin, according to Insp. Murray Smith of the Conservation Officer Service. That’s when the bear charged at the man, bowling him over before disappearing into the forest.

The man was bruised and sore from the fall, and may have been concussed, according to Smith.

Conservation officers set bear traps around the area, which has now been marked off with police tape. New signs have also been put up warning there is a bear in the area.

By Wednesday morning, they still hadn’t located the bear, something Smith says is not surprising given the cool, dreary weather. 

“Bears activity tends to slow down in this kind of weather,” he said. 

The bear's alleged aggressive behaviour combined with the fact that that it hung around the campsite for a couple of days and that it has become accustomed to human food all mean the bruin is a problem. That means if conservation officers find it, “It would be euthanized.”

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