Top animal stories of 2021: Viral moments from '7-Eleven bear' to hungry bald eagle

Animals continued their mischievous ways throughout 2021

NEWYou can now listen to Fox News articles!

A mischievous squirrel, a hungry bald eagle, an embarrassed raccoon and curious bear were among some animals that went viral in 2021.

Here are some of the year’s most noteworthy animal stories:

A bear walks into a 7-Eleven …

Employees working the late shift at 7-Eleven are probably used to dealing with some unusual customers – but what about a curious bear?

One employee in California filmed her dealings with a bear that opened the store's front door and walked inside.

The worker filmed a bear opening the store’s front door and walking right inside. While the animal appeared calm and mostly just curious, it also did not seem to react to the screams from the employee.

The worker filmed a bear opening the store’s front door and walking right inside. While the animal appeared calm and mostly just curious, it also did not seem to react to the screams from the employee. (Rachelle Ducusin via Storyful)

Rachelle Ducusin, an employee at the Olympic Valley convenience store, captured the footage while she tried to scare the animal away. 

She told Storyful, a news-gathering agency, that she was able to call 911 for help. Emergency services arrived and scared the large animal off with rubber bullets before anyone was injured.

Colorado homeowner finds rarest mammal in North America hiding in their garage

A homeowner in Colorado made an unusual discovery earlier this week when they found the rarest mammal in North America hiding in their garage. 

Colorado Parks and Wildlife confirmed that a black-footed ferret was found in a residential garage in Pueblo. 

According to a press release, the home is located near a ranch that is home to a colony of the rare and endangered mammals.

Fortunately, the animal was successfully rescued and will be returned to its colony.

Florida fisherman catches small shark, bald eagle grabs it

Florida fisherman and his family captured the moment a bald eagle swooped down to steal their catch. 

In a video of the encounter, Chad Rissman had been reeling in a shark on the Dunedin Causeway as the sun set when the bird of prey decided to claim it as its own. 

The line was cut short and both the line and hook were taken away from the eagle. 

Georgia firefighters help ‘embarrassed’ raccoon out of a jam

Everyone needs a helping hand every now and then – even a mischievous raccoon.

Firefighters in Georgia responded to a home in Dalton, about 90 miles north of Atlanta, on Monday night to remove a raccoon that broke in, presumably in search of snacks, and couldn’t find its way back outside. 

Firefighters shared a photo of the wild animal after it was caught in its unfortunate predicament and used its paw to cover its face in apparent humiliation.

Firefighters shared a photo of the wild animal after it was caught in its unfortunate predicament and used its paw to cover its face in apparent humiliation. (City of Dalton Fire Department)

"As you can tell, he was pretty embarrassed about it, but it's really nothing to be ashamed of," the City of Dalton Fire Department wrote on Facebook. "We all need a helping hand every now and then."

Squirrel ringing doorbell caught on homeowner's camera

Dakota Anglin, from Oklahoma City, Okla., shared a clip from her doorbell camera that showed the hilarious moment an unexpected visitor come to their door

Anglin told Fox News that she and her husband were away from home, so didn’t see the squirrel in person. However, they did see the clip on their phones. 

"My husband and I were both at work, and both got a notification that someone was at the door," Anglin told Fox News. "We called each other laughing at what we saw."

Fox News' Michael Hollan, Ann W. Schmidt and Julia Musto contributed to this report.