The Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) confirms that a black bear was euthanized by local law enforcement Sunday, June 13, in Perryville.
According to MDC Wildlife Regional Supervisor Matt Bowyer, this was a situational call by local law enforcement.
MDC personnel were notified of sightings of the bear Friday, but at that time the bear was not inside the city limits and was not causing any disturbance.
Sunday morning, the bear was reported moving through the town.
“This young male bear was likely looking for an easy food source,” Bowyer said. “Unfortunately there can be things like trash and other smelly items in town that might seem like food to a bear.”
MDC protocol when responding to nuisance bears usually begins with harassment of the animal in efforts to encourage it to travel elsewhere. Harassment means shooting it with rubber bullets and other techniques.
However, the situation evolved quickly as the bear moved into more populated areas and normal protocol was not an option at that point.