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Bear Wanders Into 7-Eleven, Gets Nose Sanitized

It opened door of California store
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 17, 2021 5:46 PM CST

(Newser) – "He just wanted a Slurpee," a TikTok user quipped after a 7-Eleven employee in California shared a video of a bear wandering into the store. In the video, the employee at the store in Olympic Valley, around 7 miles away from Lake Tahoe, can be heard screaming at the brown bear to get out after it opened the door and began sniffing around, triggering the hand sanitizer dispenser with its nose, the Sacramento Bee reports. Employee Rachel Ducusin said the bear entered the store after she tried to stop it ransacking garbage cans outside, per the New York Post. Ducusin said she called 911, and the bear departed after authorities shot it with rubber bullets.

The store said the bear, which has an ear tag, has been spotted in the 7-Eleven parking lot numerous times but has never made its way into the store before. But Kevin Thomas, a regional manager for the California Department of Fish and Wildlife, says it might become a repeat customer. "The behavior is not typical of wild bears," Thomas tells SFGate. "It is a learned behavior from pursuing human food sources rather than foraging in the wild. Lake Tahoe has a robust bear population and they often interact with homes and businesses in search of food," he says. "Once they get a taste of human food it can be difficult to reverse the behavior." (This woman fought off a bear she found in the kitchen of her Lake Tahoe cabin.)

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