Black bear tranquilized in tree near Portland school

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by Associated Press, LORI MATSUKAWA / KING 5 News

KING5.com

Posted on June 1, 2011 at 11:10 AM

Updated Wednesday, Jun 1 at 7:26 PM

TUALATIN, Ore. (AP) -- A black bear that wandered onto a field next to a Portland-area elementary school has been tranquilized and removed. Students who arrived at Tualatin Elementary School before classes were canceled due to the bear stayed indoors Wednesday and studied what a district spokeswoman described as "bear curriculum."

The 200-pound male bear eluded capture for several hours but was finally darted with a tranquilizer gun and fell asleep in a tree he had climbed. When he failed to fall from the tree into a waiting net, a firefighter trained in technical rescues climbed up and fashioned a harness while a federal Agriculture Department wildlife expert gave the bear another dose of tranquilizer -- just in case. Firefighters then lowered the animal safely 60 feet to the ground.

The Oregonian says state Department of Fish and Wildlife agents plan to release the bear in the coastal mountains.

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