“Last night the bear was anesthetized with an anesthetic gun from 20 feet away,” Georg Brosi from the Department for Hunting and Fishing told online news site 20 Minutes.
A press release confirmed that the bear known as M13 had been anaesthetized with a shot on Thursday night and then fitted with a GPS and VHS tracking device.
The operation took place just outside of Scuol in canton Graubunden, near to where the bear was first spotted, online news site 20 Minutes reported.
The aim now is that the bear can be tracked. Every hour, Brosi will receive an update about the bear’s position, and can use this information to determine when the bear is approaching places he should stay away from.
This is the second collar that the 120kg bear has been fitted with. The first one, which he lost in January, was fitted in South Tyrol after he had shown no sign of being afraid of humans.
Not long before the latest tagging, bear M13 broke in to an animal enclosure and killed a goat. He has also been helping himself throughout the week to local honey from several beehives.
The hope is that Brosi will now be able to decrease the human-bear conflict-potential by repelling M13 away from certain areas using rubber bullets, as they do in Canada and the US. Otherwise, they may have to consider killing him, as they did with bear JJ3 in 2008.
Local residents are being asked to ensure that all food waste is disposed of properly or otherwise kept out of bear-reach. Otherwise, M13 might think it a good place to stay in the vicinity, which could be dangerous both for the residents and, ultimately, for the bear.