Man kills black bear with combine in S.E. Minnesota
When Tom Wightman felt a bump while harvesting corn Saturday afternoon, he knew he had hit something big.
He just didn't expect to find what he did: a 320-pound black bear.
"That's the first time that's happened. I can tell you that," he said.
Wightman drove a combine over and killed the black bear Saturday afternoon in Hay Creek Township, south of Red Wing in Minnesota's southeast corner.
The Hader Farms employee reported driving the bear off a neighboring field earlier in the day.
"I think he was hunkering down," Wightman said.
Bear-related incidents are uncommon in an area of the state with a low bear population, according to Tyler Quandt, a Minnesota Department of Natural Resources conservation officer who responded to the scene on Saturday.
"To have one hit by a combine is especially unusual," he said.
Quandt said bears have been known to hibernate in cornfields and that similar incidents have occurred in other areas of the state.