Terri Frana, 44, of Lake Mary, Florida went to her garage on Saturday when the attack happened. Frana had discovered a number of bears eating garbage they had been picking through from the Frana home. Florida is on the hunt for the bear that left the woman with multiple injuries after the mauling.
Fish and Wildlife said they had shot three bears in total, capturing them and putting them down. They did not demonstrate any fear of people which can be a sign of an aggressive bear. Officials are not sure if these were the ones that caused the disturbance in the Lake Mary residential area.
Terri Frana in complete survival mode was able to get away. At one point the bear had Frana’s head in its mouth says husband Frank Frana. The attack has shaken the Frana family, fearing there may be more in the area.
This is the second attack in the area in the last couple months. Susan Chalfant suffered serious injuries from an attack. The bear had come out of nowhere when Chalfant was walking her dogs in Longwood, Florida.
Wildlife officials have said that this time of year it is more likely that bears will be out scavenging. Residents should be aware of their surroundings and be on alert when in areas that may have food to scavenge.
The hunt for the bear that mauled the Florida woman is still in progress. The Fish and Wildlife officials have set a number of traps in hopes of capturing the party responsible for the mauling. They are armed with tranquilizer guns as well.
They are just trying to survive themselves. They are in need of food and go where they can find a meal. The bears were probably just as startled as the woman who walked upon them. They may have interpreted this as aggressive and protecting their own survival attacked. Bear attacks are a rarity in most encounters though they do happen. Most attacks happen because of cubs and it is protecting those cubs.
The bear had pounced on Frana the moment it saw her and dragged her from inside the garage on to the driveway. Frana suffered multiple bite wounds on her head, shoulder and leg. The fact that it let go and left would suggest that Frana was not a target. The bear was either trying to protect the food it had found or was scared itself.
In the most recent survey of wild black bears in Florida, the number stands at three thousand in 2002. It is estimated that these number are closer to five thousand now. At one time it was estimated to be as low as three hundred in the 1970’s in Florida.
Frana’s son found her collapsed in the living room and called 911. She was taken to a local hospital where she was treated for her wounds including 40 stitches to her head. Terri Frana is not giving any statements at the time. Still recovering from her injuries she has only watched it on television and does not want to talk about the incident right now.
Police warn that if anyone has an encounter with a bear not to play dead. They eat dead animals and anyone playing dead may become their next meal. It is recommended that a person make a lot of noise and keep a safe distance. If keeping a safe distance is not possible the police suggest backing up slowly and try to appear as big as possible. Police are still on the hunt in the Florida area for the bear that mauled Terri Frana and are warning residents to stay inside while they are hunting the animal.
By Jabar Morarend