|Man Fed Bear BBQ Before Attack|
|By ALEXIS SHAW (@ashaw109)||Jun 18, 2013, 3:04 PM|
A man who was mauled by a black bear at an Alaska campground after feeding it meat from a church barbeque "should consider himself lucky" to be alive, officials said.
Jesus Mabalot, 38, of Anchorage was attending a picnic with a church group at Eklutna Lake Campground when he wandered away from the crowd, Alaska Department of Fish and Game spokesman Ken Marsh told ABCNews.com.
"I guess he had too a bit too much to drink, he got on his bike, and took a ride down the road," Marsh said. "He had meat in his day pack when he ran into a bear."
"He threw some meat to the bear, and the bear ate it. He threw another chunk, and the bear ate it and attacked him," Alaska State Troopers spokeswoman Beth Ipsen said. "It was really brief and really quick."
Marsh said Mabalot was later discovered by a host at the campground, who found the bloodied man washing himself off from the attack, and called park rangers for help.
Ipsen said Mabalot was taken by ambulance to Alaska Regional Hospital in Anchorage with minor injuries on Saturday. He was treated for scratches, bruises, and a puncture wound in his jaw and released from the hospital.
Officials are still trying to piece the details of the attack together, as Mabalot was not coherent when rangers interviewed him, Marsh said. There were no witnesses to the mauling, he said.
Marsh said the state Department of Fish and Game sent a biologist to the campground to aid rangers and state wildlife troopers in finding the bear following the attack, but were unsuccessful.
There have been no signs of the bear since, Marsh said.
Ipsen said Mabalot was fortunate he wasn't seriously injured, as there have been fatal bear attacks recently in the state.
Mabalot was cited for feeding wildlife, which is illegal in Alaska. He was fined $310.
ABC News' attempts to reach Mabalot were not immediately successful.