A boat of Alaskan fishermen documented their successful, and risky, attempt to rescue a bear cub who was struggling against the river current and in danger of being pulled into a nearby whirlpool.
Mike Polocz tells the Anchorage Daily News that the bear was struggling to stay afloat in the Kenai River when Polocz, his son and a fishing buddy went into action.
"I couldn't watch this defenseless animal suffer," Polocz told the Anchorage Daily News. "I was ready to go in after it if it went under."
And aside from the obvious risks involved with trying to save even a bear cub, Polocz notes that the cub's mother, along with its siblings, were all standing nearby on the shoreline watching the entire scene unfold.
"I was so close I could look into its eyes and they were wide open and filled with just sheer terror," Polocz said.
On a somewhat unusual aside, the bear is screaming throughout the video in a tone that almost sounds like a disgruntled human yelling the word, "bear." But anyway, back to the rescue.
At first, Polocz tries to use his fishing net to bring the bear aboard, and the cub tries climbing into it. But when that fails, he uses the net's handle to guide the cub close enough to the shoreline for it to safely escape.
The video does not contain the final moments of the cub's escape but it reportedly let out a roar of approval upon reaching the shore and its worried mom.
"There were three pretty tough guys in the boat, and there wasn't a dry eye among us," Polocz said.
Warning: The video contains some mildly not-safe-for-work language.
- Living Nature
- the Anchorage Daily News