- CRITTER TALK
- NEWS I FIND INTERESTING
Sad news broke this morning that a security guard at a BP oil-drilling operation in Alaska shot and killed a female polar bear. The guard claims he thought he’d fired a bean-bag round to scare the female away, but instead it turned out to be a “cracker shell” that mortally wounded her. The bear was shot Aug. 3 and apparently died about two weeks later from internal injuries.
Polar bears were listed as a threatened species in 2008 after a petition and years of work by the Center for Biological Diversity. Last year, 120 million acres were designated as “critical habitat” for polar bears. Despite that, oil and gas development continues in the heart of polar bear habitat. Although there are rules about how to handle bears in those areas, today’s news is a troubling reminder that bears often pay a price when fossil-fuel industries encroach on the last few places they have to live.