“Unfortunately, this is the worst thing as a biologist,” Dan Lovelace, district biologist with the state Department of Game and Inland Fisheries (DGIF), said.
He was referring to the Oct. 28 trapping and subsequent destruction of the bear that had been frequenting the area near Lovers Leap, along U.S. 58.
Social media was a factor because videos posted and shared online helped to promote it and attract visitors, according to Lovelace.
According to some social media sites, videos posted on Oct. 24, Oct. 28 and beyond often showed visitors in close proximity of the yearling, which was usually just on the other side of the Lovers Leap wall.
“That is not a normal behavior for a bear,” Lovelace said.
According to the DGIF website, bears often distrust people.
Even though some people shared the posts on social media to try to educate and discourage people from interacting with the bear, the posts did not have that effect, Lovelace said. Sadly, even more people flocked to see the bear.
It also was fed human food, and learned to associate food with humans, according to Lovelace, who said reports also had been received that someone actually petted the…

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