Halton police say they were forced to shoot and kill a male bear Wednesday in Burlington’s Mountainside Park to protect the public, three days after officials issued a warning about bear sightings in nearby Milton.
Police told CityNews the bear was headed toward a residential area and that “public safety is paramount.”
Responding to Twitter complaints that officers should have tranquilized the bear, Halton police tweeted that the “police and Burlington Animal Control are not equipped with nor trained to use large animal tranquilizer guns.
“Ministry of Natural Resources no longer has bear technicians in our area. Burlington Animal Control and police put public safety first.”
This could be the same animal Halton police say they fielded several calls about on Saturday and Sunday.
There were several sightings of a 400-pound black bear in Milton, including someone who saw the bruin near Guelph Line and Highway 401, and a local farmer who spotted the animal on his property near Sixth Line and Lower Base Road.
Police say that one was also male and there’s nothing to indicate that it has hurt people or other animals.
Halton officials were working with the ministry.