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MDC Helps Black Bear That Has Become A Social Media Star

Janelle Larson

A black bear that has become a star on Facebook is on his way through Missouri again after some help from the Missouri Department of Conservation.

The adult male bear, which a Facebook group calls Bruno, is believed to have traveled from Wisconsin, through Illinois and into Missouri.  And Sunday morning he entered the city limits of Wentzville and cornered himself just north of I-70 and I-40/61, according to MDC.

MDC state furbearer biologist, Laura Conley, said due to his proximity to the major roadways along with a busy travel day, MDC staff decided the bear’s safety was in jeopardy.  They made the decision to tranquilize him and take him to more suitable bear habitat that was nearby yet outside of the urban corridor.  He was monitored by the MDC state wildlife veterinarian and was released unharmed when he woke up, according to MDC.

Conlee said this bear's movements are a bit out of the norm, but bears can travel long distances, and MDC frequently receives reports throughout the southern half of Missouri, a news release states.  MDC estimates there are between 540 and 840 bears in Missouri.

Michele Skalicky has worked at KSMU since the station occupied the old white house at National and Grand. She enjoys working on both the announcing side and in news and has been the recipient of statewide and national awards for news reporting. She likes to tell stories that make a difference. Michele enjoys outdoor activities, including hiking, camping and leisurely kayaking.