FWC: Black bear found in Tampa tree was caught in Orlando in 2012

Officials tranquilize black bear in tree

TAMPA, Fla. - Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission officials say the black bear that was found in a Tampa tree was the same bear that was caught in downtown Orlando in 2012.

The Tampa Bay Times reports 70-year-old Eloy Perez pulled his barking dog back inside and dialed 911. When Hillsborough County Sheriff's deputies arrived, they found the bear atop a tree in Diaz' backyard.

FWC tells Local 6 the bear was first caught in June 2012 in downtown Orlando near Orange Blossom Trail and State Road 408. He will be relocated back to the Ocala National Forest, according to FWC.

By mid-morning Friday, deputies and wildlife officials shot the bear with tranquilizer darts. After two darts he fell from the tree onto pads set out to cushion his fall.

Earlier, the sheriff's office had asked television helicopters to move back because they were "scaring the bear."

A red tag on the bear's right ear will allow Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission officials to track where he's been.

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