Wis. Couple Kills Bear After Being Attacked in Their Home While Their Children Were Asleep

·3 min read
Black Bear (Ursus americanus) walking through rainforest near Gunnuk Creek.
Black Bear (Ursus americanus) walking through rainforest near Gunnuk Creek.

Getty Black Bear

A couple survived a scary encounter with a bear inside their Wisconsin home.

The Taylor County Sheriff's Office said that on Friday night around 11 p.m, a husband and wife in Medford were attacked by a black bear after the animal came in through a window, according to a news release obtained by PEOPLE.

Prior to the attack, they saw the animal outside and eating from a bird feeder, the couple told police, police said. In an attempt to get the bear to leave, they opened a window and yelled at the animal to go away.

However, the bear then "immediately turned and charged at the house, breaking through the window and into the house and immediately attacked," police said in a news release.

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During the attack, the pair were both injured by the bear, which they were able to stab with a kitchen knife at one point, per police. Eventually, the husband was able to get a firearm and fatally shot the bear.

The couple, who both suffered several bites and injuries, were taken to a local hospital but have since been released, police said.

Fortunately, their children were asleep in their bedrooms at the time and were unharmed.

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Authorities said the bear was an adult female, and that a cub was seen running away from the home when the adult charged into the home.

The bear was taken by the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) for testing.

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According to the agency, the black bear population in Wisconsin is "considerably higher than it was 30 years ago."

"Wisconsin's occupied bear range is expanding, which means residents can expect to see black bears in areas outside of the bear's traditional range," the agency said on their website.

"Wisconsin's bear population was estimated to be about 9,000 bears in 1989. The most recent data indicates the bear population is currently estimated to be a little over 24,000 bears," they added.

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The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources said that although "black bears are normally shy animals and try to avoid humans," they can become "defensive when protecting its young or a food source."

In the event a black bear becomes aggressive, the agency recommended that individuals "talk to the bear or start shouting if it doesn't leave," and then raise their arms above their head, waving them "to appear larger than you are."

They also advised that it's important to never run or turn your back on a black bear and to "fight back if attacked."

In terms of bird feeders, the agency said it's safest to only put them out in the winter when bears are in their dens — and that in the warmer months, they should be "brought in at night and made inaccessible to bears."

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