Feds ask state agencies to help with tracking bear web clinic
Federal officials are asking state agencies in Washington to help track a controversial web clinic that’s causing a firestorm in the state.
The Department of Natural Resources is asking for the assistance of the state’s Department of Emergency Services and Public Protection to track down the clinic, which is located in the community of Twin Falls, where the fire started earlier this month.
The agency is asking that the clinics registration numbers be provided to the DES to identify its locations, which would then be made available to the public, said spokesperson Julie Fong.
The clinic’s website says it specializes in bear-eating reptiles, including the brown bear, gray wolf and red fox.
The DES is also seeking information on where the clinics web site is located and its owner.
Fong said the agency wants to learn more about what type of reptile was used and what was taken.
The state also wants to know if the clinic was operated by a registered breeder or not.
The DES said it received an emergency call about the clinic at about 8:30 a.m. on Nov. 17.
A man reported to the agency that he had seen a white, six-foot-long female with long black hair in a tree, Fong told ABC News.
The man told the DEO that he and two other people had gone to a nearby farm and were trying to take in a female bear, she said.
The man said he and the others had to run into a house on the property, where they found a black bear and a dog, Fink said.
The dogs were later found dead.
The agency’s investigation revealed the clinic had two locations in the Twin Falls area, FONG said.
They are at a total of about 15 properties, including two in the town of Twin Springs and one in Twin Falls Lake.
Fong said in the first call, the caller said the clinic used to be a barn, but was closed due to the fire.
It’s not clear what type or age of bear was taken or who took the animals, she added.
The dogs were not owned by the clinic’s owner, and it’s not known if the dogs were ever bred or sold.
The animals were euthanized in the early morning hours of Nov. 21, the DIE said.
Fongs said in a statement that the DED’s Animal Welfare Office is reviewing the records to determine what, if any, steps are needed to make sure the owners of the animals are identified.
The department also is working with the local sheriff’s office to identify any additional information that may be relevant.
A spokesperson for the DEST did not immediately respond to ABC News’ request for comment.