Euthanizing wild animals is not an easy decision.  When Idaho Fish and Game announced this week a young black bear was killed, some people were likely asking why it simply isn’t captured and moved.  The bear was killed near Hailey, where it had become food conditioned.  It was raiding gardens, bird feeders and beehives.

While some may even appear friendly, wild animals can strike at any time.

Fish and Game spokesman Terry Thompson joined us on Magic Valley This Morning on Newsradio 1310, KLIX.  He explained these decisions are based on safety.  Human safety.  A bear can be moved but it keeps the habits it has learned.  The same is often the argument applied when euthanizing large wild cats.

There are also animals that become acclimated to human contact.  From deer, elk, moose and bears.  While some may even appear friendly, wild animals can strike at any time.

Thompson had some advice about what you could do if you encountered a bear acclimated to human contact.  There are some things you shouldn’t do because for some animals you’ll immediately resemble prey.

Across the Northwest, well-meaning people have often caused the unnecessary deaths of animals.  Perhaps the most well known in recent years occurred in Yellowstone Park.  Some foreign tourists picked up a baby bison and drove it to a park office.  Once it had been handled by human beings, it would’ve been rejected by its mother.  It was euthanized.

Terry Thompson joins us twice a month and usually spends an hour with us in the studio.  I’ve edited today’s appearance to the five minute discussion on the black bear.  You can listen below.

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