Saturday 18 November 2017

Bouncy castles used to rescue bear

A black bear became stuck in a tree in Arkansas, and rescuers used two bouncy castles to save him
A black bear became stuck in a tree in Arkansas, and rescuers used two bouncy castles to save him

When a black bear climbed a tree in a US city and refused to come down, authorities turned to unconventional rescue tools: bouncy castles.

Foster the Bear, named for the residential street in Conway, Arkansas, where he holed up in a tree, would not budge from his branch. So authorities turned to a local hardware store owner who rents inflatable castles for children's birthday parties.

They asked him to set up two of the bouncy contraptions beneath the tree. Then, wildlife officials shot the bear with tranquiliser darts.

"He would slide to one side, and we're like: 'Oh, oh, oh, he's going to come down, he's going to come down,' " Conway police spokeswoman La Tresha Woodruff said. "And then he'd balance himself again."

Foster finally passed out, but he still didn't come down from his perch. Eventually, firefighters turned a hose on him until he tumbled down onto the edge of the inflatables below.

The bear, about a year old, was uninjured, though he did land in between the two blow-up castles, "like if you get something stuck between the wall and the bed," Ms Woodruff said.

Wildlife officials plan to release the bear somewhere in the nearby Ozark Mountains.

Press Association

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