Rabid Bear Attacks!

Discussion in 'In the News' started by Malum Prohibitum, Sep 11, 2007.

  1. Malum Prohibitum

    Malum Prohibitum Moderator Staff Member

    Have gun available, so as not to have to look for it.

    Unloaded guns are not much use.

    Do not expect one shot magically to do the trick, even if it is a headshot with a shotgun.


    Rabid Bear Attacks Rural Md. Home

    By Joe Holley Washington Post Staff Writer Wednesday, September 5,
    2007; 5:10 PM

    The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has designated
    Saturday as World Rabies Day, but for the Stanton family of rural
    western Maryland, commemorative events are wholly unnecessary. The
    Stantons' Aug. 29 encounter with a rabid bear -- the first to test
    positive for rabies in Maryland -- left them feeling lucky they
    weren't outside that Saturday evening of the bear rampage. They're
    still amazed at what the disease-addled creature tried to do.

    Charlotte Stanton's 15-year-old nephew, James Winebrenner III, first
    noticed the animal, at about 7 in the evening. The bear had emerged
    from the thick woods surrounding the Stanton property near
    Grantsville, in Garrett County, and was scaling an eight-foot-high
    chain link fence to get at two pygmy goats that are family pets.

    "We had the screen door opened," recalled Charlotte Stanton, a
    39-year-old homemaker. "We all started yelling to scare the bear."

    The bear immediately left the goats and bounded toward the house,
    covering the 35-yard distance in an instant. Mike Stanton, 49,
    Charlotte's husband, met the bear at the screen door just as the
    animal tried to crash through. When the couple saw the bear wasn't
    giving up, Charlotte took over holding the door against the
    creature's frenzied lunges, while Mike, a construction worker, ran to
    the family gun room for his shotgun.

    The bear then switched tactics, striding about 10 feet to the front
    window of the house where she tried to rip out the air conditioner,
    five feet off the ground. Charlotte left the door, grabbed hold of
    the unit from the inside and began a desperate tug of war with the
    134-pound sow.

    "We were fighting back and forth for the air conditioner," Charlotte
    recalled. "I knew if I let go, he'd be coming in."

    The bear was making a kind of moaning sound as it grappled for the
    air conditioner. Charlotte was yelling at her husband: "Mike, you've
    got to come quick, because I can't hold the air conditioner any

    Mike hurried into the living room with his gun, unloaded. Sending the
    nephew back into the gun room for a shell, he grabbed hold of the air
    conditioner alongside his wife and tried to keep the bulky unit from
    being ripped out of the window. Once he got his gun loaded, he
    managed to squeeze it through a crack between the window sill and the
    air conditioner. When the bear grabbed the barrel, Stanton fired
    blindly. The No. 4 shotgun pellets struck the animal in the head and
    neck but didn't kill it.

    The wounded bear collapsed in the yard, while Mike went into the
    basement and peered out, concerned that the animal would manage to
    wander back into the woods. His wife called 911, and an officer with
    the Maryland Department of Natural Resources showed up about a half
    hour later and killed the bear.

    "There have been rabid bears over the years, but it's a very uncommon
    thing to hear of," said Harry Spiker, a black bear biologist for DNR.
    In recent years, he said, rabid bears have been confirmed in
    Pennsylvania and in Manitoba, Canada, but never in Maryland. "It's
    really atypical," he said.

    Spiker said the bear would have had to come in contact with a species
    that commonly carry rabies, either a raccoon, a bat or a skunk. He
    said it was unlikely other rabid bears were in the area. "Once it
    gets past the incubation period, they only survive a couple of days,"
    he said.

    Maryland supports a "healthy population of black bears," Spiker said.
    A 2005 census found close to 400 adult and sub-adult bears, making
    for a total population between 500 and 600. They range from the
    Cumberland area as far east as Frederick.

    It's unlawful for someone to shoot a bear unless the person is
    defending himself, family members or domestic animals. The Stantons
    were within their rights, said Olivia Campbell, a DNR spokeswoman.

    "I felt really bad for the bear even though he did what he did,
    because I hate to see anything suffer," Charlotte said.

    She and her husband, along with the nephew and a 10-year-old niece
    who live with them, are receiving post-exposure rabies vaccinations,
    because Mike came in contact with the animal's blood.
  2. Thorsen

    Thorsen New Member

    I am actually surprised that #4 was enough to slow it down significantly.

  3. USMC - Retired

    USMC - Retired Active Member

    From inches away a load of number fours will leave a nice hole in any critter. Distance is your problem in this case.

    The real question is this. If they live in bear country why didn't he have a log handy?
  4. slabertooch

    slabertooch New Member

    or even better a Marine

    With a log
  5. budder

    budder Moderator Staff Member

    He probably wasn't a Marine.
  6. Malum Prohibitum

    Malum Prohibitum Moderator Staff Member

  7. zookeper

    zookeper Active Member

    it was a pretty small bear, about the same size as my wife but most likely not as shapely.

    if he'd beenpacking firewood, as anyone in bear country should, he'd probably have been able to stop it before it trashed the ac.
  8. JiG

    JiG Awaiting censure

    I live butted against natl forest. The same forest the marine with a log was camping in. Bears are seen around here quite a bit.

    I won't be using my shotgun against a bear.... I've got a .450 Marlin that can handle bizness. I bought it specifically for any unforseen bear problem. Yes, it's ready to rock and roll.

    I don't keep trash around to attract bears, so all is well around here, until a rabid bear comes around. :wink:
  9. WoodAtl

    WoodAtl Guest

    "We all started yelling to scare the bear"

    that was stupid....
  10. slabertooch

    slabertooch New Member

    Except you have to have the rest of the package too

    Log + Marine + Bear= Dead Bear

    Log + Bear = Dead Camper (mmmm crunchy)

    So to protect against Bears see your local Marine recruiter