When a black bear showed up in a residential area in Alligator Point, Florida, wildlife officers knew they had to trap it and move it away from the neighborhood. After they hit the bear with a tranquilizer dart, though, things started to go horribly wrong. Thankfully, biologist/badass Adam Warwick was on the scene, ready to make his mark as the bravest guy ever to swim in the Gulf of Mexico.
Once the bear was hit with the tranquilizer dart, it panicked and ran towards the water. As it swam further and further out into the Gulf, it became drowsy. Adam knew that if something wasn’t done, the bear would drown. So he did what basically no one else would ever do and jumped in alone to save the animal.
The bear slowly began to lose its ability to move its legs, but that didn’t stop it from trying to climb on top of Adam to keep from drowning. Somehow, the biologist remained calm and grabbed the bear by the scruff of the neck with one hand and supported it from underneath with the other.
Adam never gave up.
After what seemed like an eternity, Adam made his way out of the water with the groggy bear. Despite the ordeal, he suffered only one scratch from the bear and a cut foot from the barnacles.
Everyone on shore held their breath as Adam dragged the nearly-400-pound beast twenty-five yards to land. By this point, the bear was having trouble keeping its head above water. But
Now that the bear was on land, the team was able to use a tractor bucket to transport it to Osceola National Forest. I don’t think he’ll be going anywhere near large bodies of water for a long, long time. Adam went above and beyond to save one of nature’s most dangerous animals. He’s not only one of the most legendary human beings I’ve ever heard of, but also a hero to one very lucky bear.
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Photos by Becky Bickerstaff