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Bear Attacks Hunter in Tree

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Bear attacks hunter in tree
Franklin area man suffers leg wounds

Michael A. Sawyers
Times-News Staffwriter

FRANKLIN, W.Va. — A bear is said to have climbed a tree and attacked a man who was bow hunting deer from an elevated stand on Oct. 22 near Franklin, biting and clawing both of his legs below the knees, according to Hoy Murphy, public information officer for the West Virginia Division of Natural Resources.

The victim was James Lambert, 25, of Dry Run Road near Franklin. A report supplied by Conservation Officer Shane Duffield indicated that Lambert was eventually able to escape to his vehicle and was later treated at Rockingham Memorial Hospital in Harrisonburg, Va.

Murphy confirmed that wildlife personnel from the agency’s Romney office attempted unsuccessfully to find and capture the bear. Duffield reported that Lambert suffered puncture wounds, lacerations and claw marks to both of his lower legs during the incident that took place on Ned’s Mountain, Murphy said.

Lambert’s father, Dennis, said Tuesday night that his son was not feeling well enough to talk by phone. The elder Lambert said his son’s legs were bothering him.

“It happened just at daybreak,” Dennis Lambert said of his son’s run-in with the sow, who he said, had two cubs with her. “At one point the bear tried to climb another tree so she could come down on top of him.” The father said his son described the size of the bear only as “big.”

Dennis Lambert said his son was able to stab the bear several times with a hunting knife and eventually jumped from the ladder stand that was 11 or 12 feet high. The younger Lambert was able to escape the bear and walk the half-mile to his vehicle and then drive a mile or so to his home, at which time his father took him to the Virginia hospital about 40 miles away.

James Lambert was admitted, according to his father, returning home two days later. “He got a lot of stitches and staples,” Dennis Lambert said of his son. He added that his son was not using bait in an attempt to attract deer to his hunting location.

“We’ve been having a lot of bear problems in this area,” he said. “Bears tried to get up trees on two other hunters and one got after a squirrel hunter.”

A state wildlife official in Romney confirmed the incident, but would not comment further, saying the matter is under investigation by officers of the Law Enforcement Section of the DNR.


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I don’t have pictures but had a bear climb a tree I was sitting in about 7 years ago. I was bear hunting with my 284 Winchester. When it was halfway up I eased over(looking down) the side of the stand, letting it see me. I also pointed a rifle at the bear. With that it decided to go down the tree.

It was a smaller, but legal bear. If it came within 4-5’ feet from me I would of shot it. Just a few years prior a MI bear hunter was bitten in the feet by a bear, same deal, it climbed a tree he was sitting in.
 

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The last bear I shot at was a 6 foot black bear that was smelling my feet in the ladder stand. I missed at 2 feet with bow kinda got excited! I was going to let him walk but he started up the ladder. After the shot I realized my bow hit the tree stand after release and the string and cables were off the broad head hit ladder step threw sparks all over the bear. I had my 44 mag I drew it afterwards the bear was about 10 yards away kinda shocked and I let him walk away. Very exciting hunt that night and spark show.
 
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