The drop bear — Australia’s favourite fictional animal — is a very real phenomenon at the University of Colorado.
Traditionally, Aussies have depicted drop bears as vicious marsupials, closely related to koalas, who inhabit treetops and drop down from above to attack their unsuspecting victims. Stories of drop bears are usually told to frighten and confuse tourists and get a laugh out of locals who are in on the joke — but wildlife officials at the University of Colorado aren’t laughing.
That’s because, for the second time in three years, an actual bear has dropped out of a tree on the University’s Boulder campus.
A two-year-old bear was spotted lounging in a tree on campus on Friday, leading police, the school’s facilities management department and Colorado Parks and Wildlife to be called in to deal with the unusual visitor.
After setting up padded mats below the tree, the bear was tranquilised and fell to the ground unhurt. It was then loaded onto a trailer, and will be relocated to the mountains in nearby Boulder or Larimer county.
Unbelievably, this is the second time this extremely unlikely situation has played out exactly like this on the University of Colorado’s Boulder Campus. In 2012, another bear was tranquilised after climbing a tree, and photos of the infamous “falling bear” sparked memes and went viral.
Keep that in mind next time you joke about drop bears…