ANDOVER, N.J. – Wildlife officials set a trap, baited with bacon and molasses, in hopes of catching a bear Friday that killed a pony and dragged its carcass away.
"No other animal would have the strength to do that kind of harm," said Elaine Makatura, a spokeswoman for the Department of Environmental Protection (search).
The owner found the pony's body Thursday at her farm in Sussex County (search) in northern New Jersey. The 15-year-old pony, named Phantom, suffered a broken neck and was dragged through two electric fences and up a hill.
Bear prints (search) were found.
"It was a big, big print," Patrolman Rod Mosner said. "It's amazing [the bear] had that much strength and power to drag a pony that far."
The pony weighed at least 250 pounds.
This time of year, bears are starting to leave the dens where they hibernated in winter, and spring plants have not grown enough to be a substantial food source, wildlife officials said.