MIRAMAR BEACH, Florida — A 200-pound black bear died Tuesday after being hit by a vehicle on Emerald Coast Parkway near Fort Walton Beach in the Florida Panhandle.
Stan Kirkland, a spokesman for the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, told the Northwest Florida Daily News (http://bit.ly/1cbcuYo ) that a passing motorist saw the bear and called authorities around 7 a.m. Tuesday.
Kirkland said officials don't know when the bear was hit. The bear was a male, and didn't have an ID tag.
The agency will dispose of the bear's remains in an area closed to public access.
"There is some illegal trade in bear parts," Kirkland said. "For instance, there is some market for bear claws and parts of bears overseas are sold for medicinal purposes like their gall bladders, so we don't make those carcasses available to people."
Kirkland said there have been recent reports of a black bear in the area. He said a bear damaged a beehive a week ago and raided a chicken coop around Halloween, but there's no way to know if this was the same bear.
"We have nothing to indicate this bear has been caught before, so there's not much more to tell about the bear," Kirkland said.