Cop Stumped When Bear Refuses To Move, Looks Closer And Acts Fast

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A bear family was trying to cross the road when the mama bear kept pacing back and forth as one of her babies seemingly refused to move. It caught the attention of a police officer, who had to act fast after taking a closer look and realizing what was wrong.

(Photo Credit: Facebook/Town of Carroll Police Department)

Trooper Thomas Owens, an officer with the Carroll Police Department in New Hampshire, took a call for a black bear family, trying to cross a road, the NH State Police reported. Rather than getting across quickly, the mama bear, accompanied by four cubs, kept going back and forth.

When Trooper Owens stopped to help, he found the mama seemingly pacing in the road, The Dodo reported, and it wasn’t long before he understood why. The Town of Carroll Police Department was familiar with this particular bear family.

Thomas Owens
(Photo Credit: Facebook/Town of Carroll Police Department)

“This is the mother that had five cubs out in Bretton Woods,” the department explained in a Facebook post, adding that the day before, they had to pick up one of her babies. The cub, a runt, had been sick, weak, and unable to keep up with its mom and siblings.

In a comment, the Town of Carroll Police Department explained that a bear having five cubs was rare since most typically have only two or three cubs at a time. “It is very, very, rare. This is only the second time we are aware of it in NH,” the department wrote.

(Photo Credit: Facebook/Town of Carroll Police Department)

As the mama tried to cross the road with her four remaining cubs, at least one of her babies seemed to be refusing to move, according to Reshareworthy. The mom was going back and forth, trying to get the cub to come along. She obviously wanted all four of her cubs to remain with her, but one couldn’t keep up with her and its siblings because it was sick and too weak to move.

Trooper Thomas Owens knew he had to help. “After doing some bear traffic control, we had to take one bear cub in for Fish and Game to be rehabilitated as it was too weak to keep up with its mom and siblings,” the department explained. “This leaves her with three other very healthy cubs that she can now focus on and take care of. The other two will be rehabilitated and returned to the wild when they are stronger.”

Thomas Owens
Trooper Thomas Owens (Photo Credit: Facebook/NH State Police)

Trooper Owens watched cautiously, and after some time, the mama eventually made the heartbreaking decision to leave the sick cub and continue on her way with the healthy three. The officer was able to then scoop up the weak one so that it could get the help it needed, the department explained.

Jokingly, the department described the process of rescuing the cub, saying, “In short, it is a very delicate process that involves distracting mom, running fast with a screaming bear cub, and hoping you make it back into the cruiser in time!” They did offer the public a serious warning first.

(Photo Credit: Facebook/Town of Carroll Police Department)

“Remember, never pick up or handle wild animals,” the department wrote. “This was done under the care of Fish and Game. If anyone runs into an issue with wildlife please, please, please contact your local PD or Fish and Game to assist!”

Many concerned citizens questioned why two of the five babies were sick. “They were the ‘runts’ of the group,” the department explained, “5 cubs is very rare for a bear to have and an even bigger problem trying to care for them all, just way too much for this poor mom bear trying to take care of them all.”

Thomas Owens
(Photo Credit: Facebook/Town of Carroll Police Department)

While in the wildlife rehab, the cubs were said to be “doing great, getting stronger by the day.” In addition, “Both mom and the other three cubs have been seen many more times as well,” and, “they are also doing great!” the department happily reported.

Jane Langmaid happened to be in a car that had to stop for the bear family as they attempted to cross. Zooming in from her car, she was able to film the family of bears and Trooper Thomas Owens doing his job. “I had the pleasure of watching the officer and cubs in action,” she wrote in the caption of the clip.

I had the pleasure of watching the officer and cubs in action… and making this video which demonstrates the problem as well as the great love of the bear family and care by the officer… very amazing and great job!MORE DETAILED INFO IF DESIRED: It never occurred to me that my short video would travel around the world and get enjoyed by so many but misrepresented by a few. Therefore I had to edit this now after 48 hours to add a few more facts. 1) I took the video by zooming in from my car 2) Location is Base Road, Bretton Woods, Town of Carroll, New Hampshire, White Mountain National Forest (more than 750,000+ acres of protected wilderness) 3) We do NOT feed the bears, chase them or disturb them…this is their home 4) the mother bear is not confused or unsure of where to go— the mother originally had 5 cubs… when I made this video, one runt was already in Lyme NH Bear rehab so there are 4 cubs here… the mother is trying to move from the right side to the left side…she wants all 4 cubs to remain with her…the problem is that 1 of the 4 is also very weak/a runt…. Before I started the video I had already watched her try to lead the 4 across the road… after I started the video she tried a few more times…. 5) Where are they going? Only the bear knows…. I do know she is in the direction of the Ammonoosuc River (a 50 mile long river in Northern NH} …but only the bear knows her own destination in the great forest 6) What happened? You’ll see at the end that the 4th cub/ the runt…finally does make it across but you can see the runt as a brown dot under (actually behind) the police car.. 6) I later learned that the family of 4 (mom + 3 lively cubs) did have to leave this runt… therefore the police did connect runt #4 with the Lyme NH Rehab as well, where sibling #5 already was… I have learned that 18 months is a normal rehab time…at which point the mother would have let them live alone….the goal with high success is to introduce them back into the wild…Mr. Ben Kilham is the expert in this area ( for Lyme NH Rehab) 7) Some odd folks have gotten mad saying we are feeding the bears to get a chance to see them or trying to speed over the bears- and are even “impatient jerk drivers” ridiculous…. some people’s cup is not even close to ½ full… I pray blessings upon them…. Here, there are only 3 cars (not including the police) and we are patiently waiting and happy to wait – I would have waited much longer or gone a different way but I was blessed to see this many cubs and the GREAT LOVE of the MOTHER, as well as her patience and persistence to get the bears to stay as a group. I was also praying for the little runt… further, I was impressed by the local police who have much experience and care for wildlife up in these remote rural areas 8) It is very beautiful up here…but also cold in the winter so I think that keeps the human population down. However, most of us who live here are used to seeing wildlife. We must watch for them, slow for them, we do NOT feed them, nor try to disturb them and we want them to live comfortably in their homes here in the forest. They are a precious treasure. Sure there are mistakes everywhere, but on the whole, wildlife and man live nicely together in these parts. 9) The officer has been called in to be sure the wildlife can cross and the humans are aware, and he does a super job! He is not harming nor in the way of the bear family. 10) All bears are not mean or violent- that is so unfair/such a myth….please read about the American Black Bear if you are interested… you can also google and google and not find an attack against a person here in the White Mountain National Forest…. You DO need to use common sense of course and never chase, feed, harm these beautiful creatures… One FB person told me you should try to scare them? (oh my word!) Perhaps with some bear, in some case, in some part of the world? I have had various training in different parts of the country based on the area and bear types… but OMG—There are certainly many strange ideas people hold onto. 11) I am a lover of nature and proud owner of the “America the Beautiful” National Park Pass…. It is not needed in these parts where I live…the National Forest doesn’t have an entry fee…but I believe this particular ticket is the best ticket in the world….. We are SO very blessed by our National Parks, Forests, Monuments and Conservation Areas… We should do all possible to protect and preserve our beautiful world with its flora and fauna… I have just returned from a trip to a number of our great parks out West…Yellowstone and Yosemite are my standing personal favorites but there are so many and they are so beautiful… every one… 12) Most annoying to me- these bears have NOTHING to do with the current president of the USA- they did not vote for him— some people are so obsessed that they can connect almost everything these days with that topic- OMW (oh my word- you have to be kidding)…I wanted to be sick when one person tried to connect my video to the president in a negative way… for real? 13) PURPOSE- one of my great joys in life is to capture and share beauty….. I am so crazy about this beautiful planet, its flora, fauna and its people. Therefore it was my intent to share my joy of seeing this beautiful bear family and especially the GREAT LOVE of the Mother and the way in which the precious babies imitate and follow the mother… note they go back and forth again and again as mother tries to get baby #4 (the runt) to come…. When I originally shared, just with my own FB friends I also asked for prayers for the runt because I know many that believe in God and prayer and know that he cares very much for his creation… I am regularly blown away by the beauty of creation… if you have time…take in a sunrise or sunset soon…or visit one of our wonderful national parks or forests….but please do LOVE and RESPECT our animal friends… I know that many of you are in other countries and I thank God for the beauty in so many countries I have seen and in the beautiful people I have met…. XO THANKS so much for watching my little video… Thank you police for doing such a great job… Thanks to all that respect nature and your fellow man…. Do me a favor and find a way to lift this world up today… that is my heart’s desire… XOXO Jane Langmaid from the White Mountain National Forest… New Hampshire

Posted by Jane Langmaid on Friday, May 12, 2017

Jane explained that the incident occurred in a part of the White Mountain National Forest, which includes almost 800,000 acres of protected wilderness. She added that the video “demonstrates the problem as well as the great love of the bear family and care by the officer” and applauded Trooper Owens for doing a “very amazing and great job!”

Indeed, it was definitely a job well done. Both cubs got a fighting chance at life, and the rehabilitation efforts were a success. In a follow-up comment, the department shared that both cubs had been “brought back up to full strength” before they were later released. I don’t know about you, but I love a story with a happy ending.