Displaced bear cub hides out in excavator cab

ECO Jarecki holds a bear cub rescued from an excavator cab
ECO Jarecki holds the bear cub rescued from the excavator cab.
New York State Department of Environmental Conservation

After a den was accidentally destroyed, one unlucky bear cub took refuge in an excavator cab in Upstate New York on St. Patrick’s Day.

The operator said he had been widening farm fields in Wilna, New York, when he inadvertently collapsed a bear den, according to the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation in a Facebook post on April 1.

He noticed the cub and attempted to approach it, but the animal ran up the machine's tracks, climbed into the cab through the open excavator door, and hid between the seat and the wall of the cab.

Environmental Conservation Police Officer Jarecki was called to the scene to help remove the cub. Officials said they attempted to locate the mother, but she was nowhere to be found.

The next day, officers transferred the young bear to the Friends of Feathered and Furry Wildlife Center in Greene County. The cub will be cared for until it is ready for release back into the wild. A release location was not disclosed.

A photo on the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation's Facebook page showed the cub being nursed by a worker at the Center.

Nursing Bear CubNew York State Department of Environmental Conservation

While some commenters chastised the operator for destroying the animal’s home, others commended him for helping to save the bear.

One commenter said, “Great work. I can’t imagine having to tell my work that I had to take a break because a bear cub hid in my vehicle.”

“It will be a long haul for the cub to be cared for in captivity without its mother. Kudos to the operator for taking the appropriate action in an effort to rescue the cub," said another.

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