A large bear that had made a home near a Tennessee college was tranquilized by wildlife officers and safely moved to a new location.
Over the past few years, the 500-pound animal had become more comfortable venturing closer to humans to obtain food.
However, sightings of the bear near populated areas increased and the animal caused multiple instances of property damage.
The Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency posted about the bear on Facebook, explaining that it has been sighted multiple times over the past years near Tusculum college.
Initially, the bear appeared to simply be looking for food and sightings were infrequent. Since the bruin recently began causing more trouble near the college, state wildlife officials decided to take action.
"A 500-pound black bear living near Tusculum college in Greeneville had become habituated to human and unnatural foods and was relocated to a remote area of the Cherokee National Forest yesterday," the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency wrote on its Facebook page. "Wildlife Sgt. David Carpenter says the bear had regular access to garbage, birdseed, and pet food had and been in the area for a few years but ramped up its activity and property damage last year. Wildlife Officers decided to trap it then due to the increasing potential for negative interaction, but were unsuccessful after the bear changed its travel routine."
Fortunately, wildlife officers were able to locate the bear in the wild.
"Recent activity indicated it was back to its old ways and Officers Ryan Rosier, Austin Wilson, and Sgt. Carpenter located the bear in a small vacant wood lot and were able to free-range tranquilize it," the post continued. "They worked the bear up and requested the assistance of the Greeneville Fire Department to help move it to the transport cage due to its size. They were glad to help and were able to use some of their specialized equipment to expedite the process. TWRA is extremely thankful for their help!"