Brown bear killed on highway was likely looking for love

Young animal had just woken from hibernation, authorities say

Brown bear killed on highway was likely looking for love

Pescara, April 26 - Wildlife authorities said on Friday that a young brown bear who was struck and killed on the A24 highway near the southern mountain town of L'Aquila was most likely distracted by his impassioned search for a mate. The animal, who weighed approximately 90 kilograms and was between three to four years old had just woken from his winter hibernation in the national park that straddles the regions of Abruzzo, Lazio and Molise, authorities believe. He died on impact when he was struck by a car early Thursday morning, destroying the vehicle but leaving the driver unharmed. "I love these mountains and hike through them often...I wish I could have seen this bear alive there, not dead on my road," said L'Aquila highway superintendent Felice Donati. The brown bear is one of the symbols of the Abruzzo region and has only recently seen a return in numbers. "He was a beautiful animal with very soft fur. He had to travel far, at least four or five kilometers to get to this part of the highway," Donati said.

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