Pedals the bipedal bear is dead

Pedals taking a walk

Back in August of 2014, we brought you the story of a bear spotted in New Jersey suburbs walking on two legs while searching for easy food in garbage cans. “Pedals” the bear had a severely injured front paw and had adapted a quite adequate bipedal gate. Pedals reappeared in October 2015 and several people collected funds to move him to a wildlife sanctuary as it was assumed it was not easy for the bear to survive. The NJ Division of Fish and Wildlife rejected the proposal to tranquilize and put the bear into captivity, preferring to take the approach that the bear live out its existence in the wild, hardship or not.

It’s a year later and at the end of this week’s black bear season, rumors circulated that Pedals had been killed in the hunt. The NJ wildlife department was deluged with calls about it and provided a statement saying that they had no way of verifying that the exact bear had been harvested and noted “multiple bears [were] observed at different check stations with injured or missing limbs.”

Pedals was frequently captured in photos around homes.

Pedals was frequently captured in photos around homes.

Apparent confirmation was released on Pedals facebook page that the bear was killed by a bow hunter who had been deliberately trying to take him for years.

There are many hunters who feel Pedals should have been taken to sanctuary, many who felt he should have amnesty from the hunt, many who would never think to kill him and many who saw first hand when he was brought in to Greenpond station on Monday. These people were kind enough to share details with us.

PEDALS IS DEAD. The hunter who has wanted him dead for nearly 3 years had the satisfaction of putting an arrow through him, bragging at the station. The very place where they weighed him, examined his legs, confirmed it was “the bi-pedal”. Where there were two biologists on hand taking many many pictures.

This page had previously included pleas by many for hunters to honor Pedals’ persistency for existence and have some compassion. They concluded by listing the names and contact info of state officials for concerned citizens to voice their opinion on what could have been done and ask that this situation not re-occur.

While our original story focused on the fact that an upright bear could concievably be responsible for reports of Bigfoot, this story has turned into something totally different. In it, we see people applying human emotion to animals, making several unsupported assumptions, and deciding what is best for a wild animal regardless of other’s rights and what is actually best for the bear population. The story makes me sad too, and I do wish that Pedals had made it to that sanctuary. But, the truth is that black bear populations are booming and they inhabit the same area as humans creating a potential for damage to property, and injury and death to both bears and humans. We must understand what it means to co-exist with large, dangerous animals. To make Pedals out to be a big Teddy bear is an egregious error. To make concessions to co-exist with wildlife is reasonable but requires expertise from wildlife biologists and some difficult decisions. With increasing confrontations with bears, wolves and mountain lions, all of which can be dangerous to humans, we must become educated in aspects of the problem, using facts and reasoning, to make informed, not emotional, decisions about wildlife management.

RIP, Pedals. I think you taught us several lessons.

Thanks to Ron Bolton for the story tip.

  11 comments for “Pedals the bipedal bear is dead

  1. Heather
    October 15, 2016 at 12:24 AM

    They should throw the guy who kill him in jail

  2. October 15, 2016 at 6:12 AM

    That’s not how it works. He did nothing illegal.

  3. Steve
    October 15, 2016 at 11:14 AM

    Not cool what he did. I think is horrible some people have no heart.

  4. M Startzman
    October 17, 2016 at 12:06 AM

    It seems everyday in the news all you hear is about who’s been shot, or killed on the highway, bombings, drowning in floods, killing in Allepo etc , etc. Why can we at least try to live in harmony with nature. We plow over their grasslands and build our homes there. Then all of a sudden they’re a danger to us. Is it really necessary to kill 435 bears, one handicapped bear all in one week. And hey, let’s do it again in a few weeks! Has your body ever been torn into with a bow and arrow? Or a rifle or gun for that matter? What Becomes Of All These Poor Animals So Cowardly killed? All life is sacred. Even Black bears. We are to be stewards of this earth and it’s creatures. ..not exploit and pollute it or slaughter it’s creatures. Please stop the senseless killing!

  5. Mj Potter
    October 17, 2016 at 9:07 AM

    It is sad someone is bragging about an easy kill like he had risked his life to take down a dangerous animal. It falls into the same category of so canned hunts. It is deplorable.

  6. Bob Jase
    October 17, 2016 at 3:33 PM

    Nothing more manly than killing a crippled animal from a distance.

  7. zardac
    October 17, 2016 at 11:12 PM

    The bipedal bear had a quite adequate gait.

  8. Gabe
    October 18, 2016 at 10:10 AM

    I’m sick of people valuing animal life over human life. The guy who legally shot it is now receiving death threats. I don’t think these people realize what political tools they are. It’s a dead bear people. Stop getting attached to the wrong things. These same freaks would welcome this hunter’s aim if the bear was attacking them.

  9. October 18, 2016 at 12:59 PM

    Nobody is “valuing animal life over human life”
    They simply value animal life.
    If you were kicking a puppy to death and I tried to stop you, would you accuse me of “valuing animal life over human life”?
    I get tired of this false equivalency argument whenever someone donates to the SPCA or PETA and they subsequently get criticized for not helping the starving kids in the Sudan.

  10. Gabe
    October 19, 2016 at 12:02 PM

    Now, bring your argument full circle. There’s no puppy or children in Sudan being discussed here. It’s a bear during bear hunting season. Stop getting attached to bears…they’re hunted so you might get your feelings hurt.

  11. Bruce
    October 23, 2016 at 10:34 AM

    Sorry as long as there are children going hungry because there is no food in the house or being molested or beaten I find it difficult to be outraged when a wild animal is killed during hunting season.

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