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A bear walks into an emergency room; no, that's not the start of a joke

 A bear strolls into a Juneau-area hospital. Photos courtesy of Nelea Fenumiai.
A bear strolls into a Juneau-area hospital. Photos courtesy of Nelea Fenumiai. (KTUU)
Published: Oct. 3, 2018 at 11:18 AM AKDT
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Hospital staff and patients in Juneau had a brief moment of excitement on Monday evening after a young bear moseyed into the receiving entrance of the emergency room.

No one was hurt, but those that saw it have a pretty good story to tell.

The yearling black bear's presence was announced over loudspeakers inside Bartlett Regional Hospital in Juneau just after 5 p.m., according to emergency room witnesses.

The announcement said a bear was walking in the ER hallway, and asked for help from security, who later shooed the bear outside.

"We are pretty used to nuisance bears around here," said Nelea Fenumiai, an employee at the hospital and witness who was able to snap some pictures of the bear. "I went out through triage to see the little guy just wandering in."

Shortly after that, security chased the bear out of the building, and the Alaska Department of Fish and Game was called in.

According to Roy Churchwell, biologist with ADF&G, the department responded and captured the yearling bear.

As it would happen, University of Alaska Fairbanks researchers were looking to capture a live bear for a project, and Churchwell says that's where the bear will be headed soon.

According to Churchwell, yearlings can often be out on their own, but as this one looked a little small, some possibly mistook it for an orphaned cub.

The bear was captured safely and will be shipped off on a plane sometime Wednesday, an unusual next chapter for an unusual bear.