Long, Strange Trip for Wandering #BlackBear
The big black bear that appears to have worked his way from the far west Boston suburbs, through Needham and almost to Brookline captured the attention of the entire Boston area.
It started over the weekend in the far western suburbs of Boston: reports of a wandering black bear. Or, as it became known as feverish reports popped up on Twitter as the weekend turned into Monday, the #BlackBear.
He—or she—appears to have wandered his/her way for miles, almost to the Boston city line.
Massaschusetts was fascinated: Twitter was afire with breaking news reports of where the bear had been seen. Television jumped into the coverage, too.
On Monday morning, Needham Police sent out a Swiftreach 911 call alerting residents that a bear had been seen in Needham Heights. Monday night, the bear was seen at the Newton/Brookline town line, near Skyline Park. At around 9:30 p.m., reports started coming in from residents. Shortly after that, a thunderstorm rolled through the area.
Massachusetts Environmental Police told local police to leave the bear alone unless it headed into a residential area. Before 9 a.m. on Tuesday, Brookline Police and Environmental Police responded to a tree on Pine Road, where the Brookline bear was resting about 25 feet above ground.
The Brookline Police Department Tweeted:
Black bear, black bear what do you see? I see Brookline police looking at me. pic.twitter.com/BI5f9yXL
A crowd gathered near the tree as environmental officers loaded a tranquilizer gun and shot the bear from a bucket truck. He then fell out of the tree. Before being loaded into a truck packed with ice, he was checked out by vets who said he was fine for transporting somewhere far away from the city and suburbs, to western Massachusetts.
Meanwhile, Twitter had responded by switching to the hashtag #BrooklineBear. And one Tweeter created the @BrooklineBear account. He promised to update followers with his location so fans can send him flowers (and salmon). He also says he had lunch with the Wellesley Moose at Volante Farms yesterday.
Other Twitter users speculated that the #BrooklineBear may have spent last night on Lansdowne Street, or is actually Kevin Youkilis refusing to leave Boston. Bukowski Tavern in Boston's Back Bay also offered to whip up a hangover burger for when he recovers from the tranquilizer dart.
Environmental police confirmed that the bear had been tagged before, and told WBZ that they are looking into whether or not the bear is the same who was seen in Cape Cod earlier this month.
Bear sightings came in from in Medfield, Norwood, Dedham, Needham and Newton before he made it into Brookline, which would make his trip something of a suburban odyssey.
Brookline Police Chief Daniel O'Leary told the Globe that police believe there is another bear still active in the area. But Reginald Zimmerman, spokesman for the Massachusetts Department of Energy and Environmental Affairs, told Patch that it's "highly likely" that the #BrooklineBear is the same one that roamed the exurbs last weekend, although no one can be positive.
We will miss you, #BrooklineBear.