MONTERREY, Mexico – A family of five bears was trapped in a residential area in San Pedro, a city in the northern Mexican state of Nuevo Leon, and taken to a park for observation and later release into the wild, emergency management officials said.
A report that the bears had been spotted was received around 9:00 a.m. Monday by police in San Pedro, which is south of Monterrey, the capital of Nuevo Leon.
The female bear and her four cubs were sleeping in a tree in the city’s upscale Los Colorines section, where a stream runs.
State wildlife officers and municipal police responded to the bear sighting and used tranquilizer darts to capture the animals.
“We provided support to the personnel and they captured them using tranquilizers and nets,” an emergency management office spokesman said.
The bears were not harmed and were taken to La Pastora state park for observation in case they have a reaction to the sedative, the emergency management office spokesman said.
The bears were to be released in the Sierra de Santiago mountains.
The Monterrey metropolitan area is surrounded by hills that provide habitat for bears, which occasionally enter the city in search of food and water.
The bears have been forced in recent years to leave their habitat because of the drought in Nuevo Leon and lack of food, especially during the intensely hot summer months.
Officials have long warned residents of the dangers posed by wild animals and urged them to immediately report sightings of bears and other animals. EFE