A polar bear killed a mother and her son in a remote part of Alaska.
Authorities were notified of this fatal attack at around 2:30 p.m on Tuesday. According to The Associated Press, Alaska state troopers said that a polar bear entered the village of Wales and began chasing several residents. The bear then fatally attacked a woman and a young boy. A local resident shot and killed the bear.
According to the Anchorage Daily News, authorities identified the victims as 24-year-old Summer Myomick and one-year-old Clyde Ongtowasruk. This mother and her young son were attacked when walking between the school and the Wales clinic. It was the first fatal bear attack in more than 30 years in Alaska.
Wales is a remote village with a population of less than 200 people. It’s located on the southern tip of the Seward Peninsula.
While polar bear attacks in Alaska haven’t happened for some time, there seems to be an increase in polar bear attacks overall.
Some research suggests that as humans occupy more land, polar bears become more common. According to BBC, “A 2017 study published by The Wildlife Society found that polar bear attacks on humans had increased since 2000 and were more likely to occur between July and December — when sea ice covered a smaller area.”
An investigation by officials from Alaska’s Department of Fish and Game is beginning when weather permits travel to Wales, according to ABC News.