Time and again Man has wanted to prove his supremacy over voiceless animals, and come spring the bear spearing season begins in the Americas.
But this year it will hopefully be a different season, because a recent Youtube video uploaded by US hunter Josh Bowman- a 13-minute long video showing the hunter spearing a black bear- is being severely criticized by environmentalists and social media users alike.
The video, which was reportedly posted online in June, showed hunter Josh Bowman impaling the black bear with a long spear with a GoPro camera attached to it. He is then seen boasting about his kill: "I drilled him perfect. That was the longest throw I ever thought I could ever make.”
Josh Bowman is a personal trainer and former competitive javelin thrower, and hit the bear with the hand-thrown spear. It's believed the video was shot in northeast of Edmonton. Bowman was accompanied by Swan Hills outfitters John and Jenn Rivet and carried a two-metre spear equipped with 40-centimetre blade. The large black bear was drawn to the area through bear baiting, where food is placed near a waiting hunting party.
"I just did something that I don't think anybody in the world has ever done, and that was spear a bear on the ground, on film," Bowman says on the video.
The hunting party left the area afterward, due to darkness and rain, Bowman later says. The next morning they returned and found the bear dead, about 50 metres from where it had been hit.
In a statement to CBC News, Bowman said the bear "died immediately," adding the kill was "as humane and ethical as one could get in a hunting situation on big game animals."
Spear hunting is legal in Canada's Alberta province but officials have said they are investigating whether Bowman could still face charges for killing the bear. The government earned total revenues of CA$18.8m (£11m, $14.6m) by issuing hunting licenses in the 2015-2016 season, Reuters reported. In 2015, about 19% of 119,000 big game hunters in the Canadian province purchased archery hunting permits, according to a government website. However, there were no official figures for spear hunting permits issued the same year.
"The type of archaic hunting seen in the recently posted video … is unacceptable," Alberta's Ministry of Environment and Parks said, in charge Kyle Ferguson. A ban on spear hunting is expected to be in place this autumn, he said.
Conservation groups have also pressed for change in the laws. "We've got at least one hunter that has come up here and wanted to hunt by use of a spear, so now it means we're going to have to address it by way of policy," said Wayne Lowry, president of the Alberta Fish and Game Association, a conservation group that consults with government on its regulations.
Bowman said he has received hundreds of death threats and is pretty much absent on social media to avoid more backlash.
Information Source: ibtimes
Title image: ktla