Government View of Bear Spray vs Firearms for Defense Against Bears
Details of .22 Pistol Defense Failure against Polar Bear in Norway; iStock-940461304
U.S.A. –-(Ammoland.com)- In the United States, some governmental authorities are strongly pushing the use of bear spray over other methods of protection against bear attacks. From the Montana Hunter Ed Course:
In sudden encounters, bear spray has proven to work. Bears sprayed with bear spray often stop attacking and, as such, are less likely to inflict serious injury. Use a firearm only as a last resort and only if bear spray is unavailable. Always use your bear spray to help a hunting partner who is being attacked. Misdirected bear spray is survivable; bullets are not. Bears wounded with an arrow, knife, or firearm may intensify the attack, and killing a bear charging at full speed is difficult at best. If you shoot a bear in self-defense, leave the scene as soon as it is safe, and report the incident to Fish, Wildlife & Parks immediately.
The implication seems, if you are armed with a firearm, put it down and use bear spray instead! This is problematic advice at best. The advice ignores the possibility that bear spray will intensify an attack. It ignores the possibility a person attacked will only have 2-3 seconds to react.