Bear bites Colorado camper who was relaxing in a hammock

A black bear bit a man who was relaxing in a hammock at a Colorado campground Saturday night, according to Colorado Parks and Wildlife.

The bear wandered up to the man as he lay in the hammock at a campground in the Purgatoire River bottoms near Trinidad, the wildlife agency said in a news release Sunday. The attack was reported at about 10 p.m.

The man, who has not been publicly identified, told officials he was in the hammock when he heard a rustling noise, turned on his headlamp and discovered a bear beside him. The black bear bit the man on the upper right arm and then turned and walked away, according to Colorado Parks and Wildlife.

The man suffered a 2- to 3-inch bite. Wildlife officials said Sunday they are searching for the bear and have set traps to try to capture the animal. The agency’s policy is to kill any bear that attacks a human, and the bear will be killed if it is captured.

The man told officials he did not have any food or other items that might have attracted the bear to the hammock.

“Bear attacks are rare and we take them very seriously,” said Mike Brown, area wildlife manager for the region. “We are doing everything we can to locate this bear. And we continue to investigate the incident. Luckily, the victim’s injury appears to be relatively minor.”

The man was taken to a hospital for treatment.

This is the third reported bear attack in the state this year, according to Colorado Parks and Wildlife. In July, a bear attacked and severely injured a shepherd in a backcountry camp about 23 miles northeast of Durango — that bear was tracked down and killed.

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