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Bear that wandered to Tampa is back home, wildlife officials say

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission took this photo Monday of the release of a bear captured in a Tampa neighborhood.

Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission took this photo Monday of the release of a bear captured in a Tampa neighborhood.

TAMPA — A 300-pound black bear captured by wildlife officials Friday is back at his home: the Ocala National Forest.

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission released a photo Monday of the bear as it was released into the wild once more.

On Friday morning, a resident near Egypt Lake called deputies when he noticed the bear in his back yard. Within four hours, officials tranquilized him with two darts, hauled him into a container, and drove him back to the Ocala National Forest.

He was likely on the run searching for a mate, said commission spokesman Gary Morse.

It was the bear's second encounter with urban life. On June 8, he was captured in downtown Orlando.

Bear that wandered to Tampa is back home, wildlife officials say 05/20/13 [Last modified: Tuesday, May 21, 2013 12:52am]

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