Bear caught at Sedona resort

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By Jennifer Thomas By Jennifer Thomas
By Jennifer Thomas By Jennifer Thomas
By Jennifer Thomas By Jennifer Thomas
By Jennifer Thomas By Jennifer Thomas

SEDONA, Ariz. -- The Slide Fire burned tens of thousands of acres near Sedona and the aftermath has left concerns about flooding.

But the fire also hurt animals in the area as now more bears are coming closer to humans because of the scorched forest. One bear was caught Saturday at a northwest Sedona resort.

"It was a younger, smaller black bear that was coming into the resort primarily for water," said Larry Phoenix with the Arizona Game and Fish Department.

Phoenix said they had to tranquilize the yearling female black bear after she was once again spotted in the resort.

"Security at the resort was able to actually chase it up a tree, immediately called us," Phoenix said.

They sedated her and Phoenix climbed up into the tree and got the sleeping bear down with ropes.

"We were able to loop the rope over a branch above the bear, tie the bear off and then I would work the bear out of the tree limbs and then the ground crew lowered the bear down to the ground," he said.

Phoenix said since the Slide Fire they have had an increase in bear sightings in the Sedona area as the fire destroyed prime bear country on the Rim.

"Pushing them south … they're into new country, they're looking for areas where they can survive, where they can call home," Phoenix said.

They tagged the healthy bear and transported her to just south of Flagstaff, hoping that even though her old home was destroyed by fire this will be a place she can thrive.

"It really makes you feel good to be able to capture a bear, take care of it and then re-release it into the wild so it will have a normal bear life," Phoenix said.


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