A brown bear named “Juan Carrito,” who became a web star with his forays into the Apennine mountain town of Roccaraso in Abruzzo, central Italy, is dead. The animal, which had not hibernated despite the time of year, was found dead on Monday night, hit by a car not far from a tunnel and seriously injured.
Forest rangers helped “Juan Carrito” after the collision and took him to an animal shelter, where he later succumbed to his injuries. The 150-kilogram bear was four years old and allegedly broke into a pastry shop and the kitchen of a well-known three-star restaurant in Roccaraso to get food.
Always returned to Roccaraso
The curious four-legged friend had been spotted several times in the past while strolling through the Apennine village of Roccaraso. He ate chickens and climbed fruit trees. To prevent such “visits” in the future, the bear had already been captured, drugged and taken to a distant location. But after traveling hundreds of miles, he returned to the village where he apparently felt very comfortable.
Broke into pastry shop
In November 2021, he broke into a pastry shop and got candy. He had badly damaged the restaurant. “He is not afraid of people, he has become a danger,” Roccaraso mayor Francesco Di Donato said at the time.
A video on YouTube shows the bear after the fatal collision. These images may be shocking to some viewers:
“Juan Carrito” was a brown bear from Mars. It is a subspecies of which there are only about 50 animals left, compared to about 100 in 1980. This species lives on the Central Italian Apennines. His death once again raises questions about the often problematic coexistence of bears with the population in mountain communities. The subject is also relevant in Trentino-South Tyrol.
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