GULF BREEZE, Fla. (WKRG) — The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) has removed a trap from the Gulf Breeze area aiming to capture a bear that killed a dog on July 28.
Rebekah Nelson, a spokeswoman with FWC, told News 5 per FWC policy, an attempt is made for four nights to capture any bear that is a risk to public safety. The trap did not capture the bear, Nelson said.
“The trap was in place for an acclimation period before being open for four nights. No additional response is scheduled at this time.”
The trap was set up after a resident’s pet dog was killed by a bear in the Villa Venyce neighborhood in Gulf Breeze.
Several new developments in Gulf Breeze have left the bears with less natural habitat, causing the bears to creep into residential neighborhoods, according to Gulf Breeze natives.
FWC’s initial plan was to euthanize the bear if it was able to trap it.
The bears cubs would be either relocated or sent to a rehabilitation center and eventually released into a more remote location.
This plan sparked outrage on social media, leading to a petition calling on the FWC to remove the trap and save the bear. The petition garnered more than 25,000 signatures.
Nelson said residents should report bear activity in the area to FWC’s Northwest Regional Office at 850-265-3676.
Emergency calls or reports of illegal activity should go to 911 or FWC’s Wildlife Alert Hotline at 888-404-3922.