Editor’s note: The image on this story has been updated to show the correct type of bear. Brown bears, also known as grizzly bears, do not live in Colorado.
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KXRM) — An aggressive female bear was put down by Colorado Parks and Wildlife after it charged at two boys in Colorado Springs earlier this week.
One of the sow’s two cubs also died after it was tranquilized by officers and never woke back up.
According to CPW, on Oct. 4 at around 5:30 p.m., officers responded to a heavily wooded open space. When officers arrived, they determined an aggressive sow charged at two boys, aged 12 and 13, twice. One boy suffered a minor injury when he ran into a tree branch, said CPW.
With the help of the Colorado Springs Police Department, wildlife officers began searching the area for the sow and her two cubs.
The sow was quickly found. but when it acted aggressively toward an officer, it was euthanized.
“This was an unfortunate situation where a sow had become dangerously aggressive toward people instead of being scared of humans,” said Tim Kroening, CPW wildlife manager for the Pikes Peak area. “There was no choice but to put it down after it repeatedly charged people.”
An hours-long search then ensued for the two cubs, with the goal to capture and release them in the mountains.
“At their age and weight [about 50 pounds each], the cubs were old enough to survive on their own,” said CPW.
CPW placed a trap where the cubs were previously spotted and a CSPD drone was used to search for heat signatures, which ultimately helped to spot the bears. Officers then scared the cubs up a tree so they could be tranquilized.
The bears were later driven to the CPW Southeast Region office, where they were tagged and given a drug to reverse the tranquilizer. However, one of the cubs never woke back up.
“The death of the cub was a sad reminder of why CPW is reluctant to tranquilize wildlife. There are many risks involved when tranquilizing wildlife,” said Kroening.
The surviving cub was released Friday morning in a remote mountain location.
CPW has information about black bears and what you should do if you encounter one on its website.