Wildlife officials: Black bear found dead, bound in NC mountains

HENDERSONVILLE, N.C. — Wildlife officials in North Carolina are investigating what happened to a black bear that was found dead and bound with a rope around its neck.

Aaron Stronach with the state's Wildlife Resources Commission says it doesn't appear the bear had any significant injuries.

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He didn't detect gunshot wounds or the hide removed from the animal when he inspected it in a mountainous area near the Mills River, about 20 miles southwest of Asheville.

Stronach said a rope had been looped around the bear's neck and attached to its hind leg. He added that it's unusual to find an animal's body tied that way, even if it has been dumped after hunting.

Stronach said the body weighed 125 to 140 pounds.