The search for a bear cub that got loose in North Auburn ended successfully thanks to the efforts of several government agencies group Tuesday.
The cub was spotted in a redwood tree early Tuesday by residents of a home located north of Bell Road in North Auburn. The residents were alerted to the bear’s presence by the barking of their dogs.
The rescue was a joint effort by the California Department of Fish and Game, the Animal Services Division of the county’s Health and Human Services Department, Sheriff’s Office, Agricultural Commissioner’s Office, county Public Works Department and Cal Fire.
At about 1 p.m. Tuesday, a Fish and Game veterinarian succeeded in sedating the 40-pound cub, using a tranquilizer mounted at the end of a long pole. The vet was able to reach the bear’s perch high in the tree by standing in the bucket of a boom truck supplied by Public Works.
The tree’s branches broke the cub’s fall from the tree. After examining the animal, the vet pronounced the cub unhurt from the fall and said she is a little underweight but generally in good health.
“It was a heart-warming end to a very-challenging situation,” said Dr. Jim Gandley, assistant director of the Health and Human Services Department. “Each of the agencies pitched in to protect the public while taking every possible precaution to keep the cub from being injured during the rescue.”
The county’s Animal Services Division took control of the cub Monday afternoon after its mother was hit by a car and killed near Truckee. Animal Services transported the animal to its Auburn shelter because it was too late in the day to deliver her to a Fish and Game facility in Rancho Cordova.
At the shelter, animal control officers placed the cub in an outdoor cage made of heavy-duty pipe and wire mesh after reinforcing it with extra panels.
Sometime Monday night, the cub escaped by forcing its way through a small opening in the reinforced cage.
Animal control officers and Sheriff’s Department deputies searched for the animal throughout North Auburn Tuesday morning. Animal Services officials had notified residents and schools near the shelter that the bear was loose, emphasizing that any bear cub should be considered a danger to humans and domestic animals.