Well, there’s a sentence you don’t hear everyday. A black bear was spotted at Walt Disney World on Monday and we’re not talking about a furry member of the Country Bear Jamboree.
Sightings of a wild bear in Magic Kingdom caused a temporary shutdown of several attractions, including Big Thunder Mountain Railroad, Tom Sawyer Island, the Hall of Presidents and Walt Disney World Railroad. Fantasyland, Frontierland and Main Street were closed as well.
It’s unclear where the bear was spotted exactly — some reports say it was up in a tree near Big Thunder Mountain, while others say it was on Tom Sawyer Island. According to WDWMagic.com, Disney cast members noticed the bear before the park opened to guests Monday morning, so the areas did not have to be cleared and the lands were kept closed when the rest of Magic Kingdom opened at 9 a.m.
Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission officials confirmed that officers and biologists from FWC’s Bear Management Program were at the park, attempting to capture the adult female bear.
“In most cases, it is best for bears to be given space and to move along on their own, but given this situation, staff are working on capturing and relocating the bear,” the wildlife commission said in a statement. The bear was eventually captured Monday afternoon and has been relocated to the Ocala National Forest.
It was likely in search of food ahead of the winter hibernation season when it ended up on the property, according to the FWC.