Farmer's combine hits, kills black bearWhen Tom Wightman felt a bump while harvesting corn Saturday afternoon, he knew he had hit something big.
By: Eric Ludy, Woodbury Bulletin
When Tom Wightman felt a bump while harvesting corn Saturday afternoon, he knew he had hit something big.
He just didn't expect to find what he did: a 320-pound black bear.
"That's the first time that's happened. I can tell you that," he said.
A combine driven by Wightman drove over and killed a black bear Saturday afternoon in Hay Creek Township, near Red Wing, Minn. The Hader Farms employee reported driving the bear off a neighboring field earlier in the day.
"I think he was hunkering down," Wightman said.
Bear-related incidents are uncommon in an area of the state with a low bear population, according to Tyler Quandt, a Minnesota Department of Natural Resources conservation officer who responded to the scene.
"To have one hit by a combine is especially unusual," he said.
Quandt said bears have been known to hibernate in cornfields and that similar incidents have occurred in other areas of the state.
Ludy reports for the Red Wing Republican Eagle, which like the Woodbury Bulletin is owned by Forum Communications Co.