CHICO, Calif. - Seeing a black bear in Chico is uncommon but finding one dead in a neighborhood is even more rare.
People in the neighborhood near W. 20th St. and Normal Ave. woke up Thursday morning to a strange sight of a motionless black bear on the side of the road.
After calling Chico Police Department and the Fish and Wildlife Department, the bear was not only dead but its claws were cut off.
This factor made some believe that the bear was dumped there.
“I was just going to leave for work, and I saw this huge thing and obviously it wasn’t a dog,” neighbor Dan Whittle said. “Then there was the police and game warden, so I went down there to see what it was, and it was a bear. It didn’t look like it was harmed in any way except for its claws were missing. Someone probably hit it and just didn’t know what to do with it. They thought they could keep the claws, but you’re not supposed to.”
The black bear was about 175 pounds.
As Whittle mentioned, there were no wounds on the bear other than the missing claws.
The cause of death for the black bear is still unknown.
Action News Now called the Chico Police Department and they said taking a bear and its claws is illegal.
If you have any information about who mutilated the bear, call the California Department of Fish and Wildlife Tip Line at 1-888-334-CALTIP (888-334-2258).