Colorado man wakes to find black bear nibbling ankle: local paper

Before you go, we thought you'd like these...
Before you go close icon
Colorado Man Finds Bear Nipping His Ankle After A Nap


A resident of a Colorado mountain town woke from a nap on his deck to find a black bear nibbling his ankle, but later rejected a request by wildlife officials to put a trap on his property, a local newspaper reported on Tuesday.

Peter Rizzuto, 77, told The Aspen Times he thought at first the creature was a large dog. He said last week's encounter was very brief, and the skin on his ankle was not broken.

Rizzuto contacted the Colorado Parks and Wildlife department the following day, but then declined to place a bear trap in his backyard in the ski resort of Snowmass, near Aspen.

"I'm worried it might trap the wrong bear," Rizzuto said.

A parks and wildlife spokesman, Mike Porras, told the newspaper that the bear had not returned since last Wednesday's incident, but it was likely that it would.

"If it is walking up to humans and doing this, it would not be a big surprise if it did it again," Porras said.

Colorado is home to about 12,000 black bears. Attacks on people are rare, but typically happen when hungry bears lose their fear of humans, wildlife authorities say.

Porras said Rizzuto's small yard is open, and that children come and go in the area. He said the department might lay a trap on a nearby public area if one is available.

"No one wants to put a bear down," Porras said. "But when a bear is not afraid of humans or is approaching humans, that is a cause for concern."

See more black bears recently in the news:

4 PHOTOS
Black bears
See Gallery
Colorado man wakes to find black bear nibbling ankle: local paper
Viviane, an Asian black bear is back at home in the African reserve of Sigean on July 9, 2013 after 15 days of freedom when she escaped from her enclosure. The bear was not considered dangerous and was found at several kilometres north of the reserve. AFP PHOTO / RAYMOND ROIG (Photo credit should read RAYMOND ROIG/AFP/Getty Images)
A black bear scavenges for food beside tourists near the famous General Sherman tree at the Sequoia National Park in Central California on October 10, 2009. The Redwood trees which are native to California's Sierra Nevada Mountains are the world's largest by volume reaching heights of 274.9 feet (84.2 metres) and a ground level girth of 109 feet (33 metres). The oldest known Giant Sequoia based on it's ring count is 3,500 years old. AFP PHOTO/Mark RALSTON (Photo credit should read MARK RALSTON/AFP/Getty Images)
CHENGDU, CHINA - SEPTEMBER 9: (CHINA OUT) A black bear sits in water at the Moon Bear Rescue Centre September 9, 2006 in Chengdu of Sichuan Province, China. Established in 2002, the center has saved about 185 bears from bear farms, where farmers milked their bile for profit and now it houses 168 bears. Financed by the AAF, Moon Bear Rescue Centre has cooperated with local governments to work towards the future of eliminating bear farming in China. (Photo by China Photos/Getty Images)
HIDE CAPTION
SHOW CAPTION
of
SEE ALL
BACK TO SLIDE

(Reporting by Daniel Wallis; Editing by Lisa Lambert)

Read Full Story

Sign up for Breaking News by AOL to get the latest breaking news alerts and updates delivered straight to your inbox.

Subscribe to our other newsletters

Emails may offer personalized content or ads. Learn more. You may unsubscribe any time.

From Our Partners

Cops Catch Up To A Suspicious Speeding Vehicle - And Make An Appalling Discovery Inside Cops Catch Up To A Suspicious Speeding Vehicle - And Make An Appalling Discovery Inside
Don't Get Too Close To a Newborn Giraffe Unless You Want to Get Kicked in the Nuts Don't Get Too Close To a Newborn Giraffe Unless You Want to Get Kicked in the Nuts
If You Find One Of These In Your Yard, Don't Touch It - And Try Not To Panic If You Find One Of These In Your Yard, Don't Touch It - And Try Not To Panic