Black bear wanders into Ottawa downtown

By Staff Writer

Last week Thursday Ottawa locals were surprised, and some delighted, by a juvenile male black bear that had wandered into the Byward Market, a popular downtown neighborhood filled with bars and restaurants.

“Not again,” thought Daniel Konioukhov, a local business owner who spotted the bear outside his front doorway. “Things like this happen a lot to me. When I go camping I run into bears. I went to Turkey for one week and there was a revolution! Wherever I go, things tend to be a little too hectic. It just follows me,” Konioukhov told the Ottawa Citizen.

The police were informed at around 3:20 a.m. by residents that had spotted the bear.

After being yelled at and chased around by people trying to shoo the bear from the area, the bear retreated into a tree. City officials and the conservation officer decided it was best to wait until daylight to tranquilize and capture the bear. The bear was shot with two tranquilizer darts at around 8 am.

More trouble ensued however, when instead of falling into a prepared net on the ground, the bear became entangled in tree branches. The fire department was called to provide ladders for the bear’s retrieval.

Although police had secured the area with safety tape, by morning spectators had crowded the perimeter. A mock Twitter account dubbed Byward Bear was made, and the owner of a local pub will be adding a Byward Bear specialty drink to the menu.

After being tranquilized, the Byward Bear was given an ear tag and successfully released in Lanark County. How the bear managed to wander into the downtown core is unknown.