A wildlife biologist says the pig may have already been injured by a car, making it an easier target for the bear
Some visitors to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park got quite a show on Tuesday as they watched a black bear take down a wild hog right off the side of the road.
According toWATE 6 On Your Side, Philip Talbot and his friend were driving down U.S. Highway 321 near Pittman Center, Tennessee, when they stumbled upon the dramatic scene.
“It was really a right place, right time,” Talbot said. “We spent the day in Cades Cove looking for wildlife. We were on our way back to our cabin in Gatlinburg and were the first ones to drive up on it.”
The black bear was attacking the hog and attempting to drag it up the embankment, but the hog wasn’t going to go down easily.
“We originally thought it was a bear and cub until we got right up on them,” Talbot said. “That’s when the bear attacked and we started videoing. Both lanes were stopped. We couldn’t believe what we were seeing! I’m an avid hunter and it was the craziest thing I’ve ever seen!”
It’s now spring in the Smokies, which means black bears, which can weigh as much as 500 pounds, are leaving their winter dens and seeking food.
Bill Stiver, a wildlife biologist at the park, says it is unusual for a bear to attack an adult wild hog and speculates that the hog may have already been hit by a car and injured, making it an easier target for the bear.
Wild hogs are an invasive species that made their way into the Smokies approximately 80 years ago.
Stiver says in addition to being very destructive, the hogs compete for native food sources and carry diseases that can affect wildlife and domestic livestock.
Stephanie Mallory is a mom, a hunter and Realtree’s PR Coordinator. She’s here to deliver an insider’s look at the outdoor business and give her opinion on all things outdoors—whether you asked for it or not.