Polar bear mauls father protecting his daughters

A Canadian father died protecting his children from a rare polar bear attack in Nunavut, BBC reported.

The deceased, Aaron Gibbons was visiting Sentry Island, a popular fishing and hunting area located on the western coast of Hudson Bay, when his family was attacked by a bear.

Gibbons encountered the bear and put himself between the bear and his daughters, instructing them to run. According to a relative, he “died a hero”.

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Gibbons died in the attack but his daughters were unharmed. Another adult shot and killed the bear after the attack.

“He was enjoying his day with his children,” said Gordy Kidlapik, Gibbons’ uncle, in a statement to the Canadian media. “They were surprised by a bear that had started to stalk or charge towards one of his children.”

Although he would have had a rifle on their outdoor trip, Gibbons was unarmed at the time of the incident, according to police.

To hear irngutaq – his young daughter having to call on CB radio and crying to her grandmother, my aik, immediately after the mauling…we were very helpless. To hear my aik calling out to my qangiaq, asking if he’s okay…very heart breaking. His body was brought in at 11:15

— Gordy Kidlapik (@Irngutaq) July 4, 2018

One of his daughters, both of whom are at a primary school age, used their boat’s radio to call for help.

“We actually heard the call for help,” claimed Kidlapik. “It was terrible to listen to.”

Gibbons resided in the town of Arviat, 10 kilometres from where his death occurred. Polar bear sightings have become a regular occurrence at Sentry Island as they migrate north. The attack has sent shock-waves through his hometown.

“It’s really just incredibly sad,” commented a local lawmaker, John Main as he appeared on Canadian broadcaster CBC. “We’re a small community and when something like this happens, it affects the whole community.”

There have been 380 polar bear sightings in the area in 2017, causing public concern over safety in the Inuit community.

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There are 840 polar bears in the Western Hudson Bay region, a number that has remained stable. There has, however, been a decline in the bears’ body size and condition.

According to Kidlapik, polar bear excursions hosted in the area have removed the animal’s fear of humans. Kidlapik alleges this has caused more attacks on humans.

Walk With Bears Tours, we are just north of Churchill and the same bears you allow to approach close to the tourists migrate through our town when coming from south. @churchillwild

— Gordy Kidlapik (@Irngutaq) July 4, 2018

According to local authorities, the last Nunavut death from a polar bear attack was in 2000. The death occurred in Rankin Inlet, about 200 kilometres up the coast from Arviat.

This article originally appeared on BBC News.

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    Original news : https://tribune.com.pk/story/1750397/9-polar-bear-mauls-father-protecting-daughters/