A BEAR was shot dead by a hunter on Športová Street in the regional capital city of Prešov on the morning of August 14. The bear had wandered into town the day before and spent the night roaming a residential area.

“According to preliminary assessments, he was seven years old, weighed up to 100 kilograms and was in poor physical shape,” Juraj Ciberej of the University of Veterinary Health Care and Pharmacy in Košice told the TASR newswire.

The bear was spotted pacing around large company premises with unkempt grass near houses and a four-lane road. The area was monitored throughout Wednesday, August 13, by police and hunters, and all access roads were shut down. The bear apparently felt at home and showed no inclination to leave the area.

“The bear had to be taken down, as there weren’t appropriate conditions for mobilisation,” Ciberej said. “It was a large bear that couldn’t simply be caught and transported elsewhere. As an adult animal, he was likely to cause similar problems when set free at some other location. It’s unusual that it wandered into this area despite there being no shortage of its preferred food in the forests. We’ll see, maybe the autopsy will reveal some kind of disease. We’ll certainly be seeking an answer as to why this specimen displayed such strange behaviour,” Ciberej concluded.