80-year-old Sask. man shoots bear after it breaks into his home, twice in one night

Tuesday, 03 October 2017, 07:53:11 AM. An 80-year-old Saskatchewan farmer spent much of his day on Sunday fending off persistent black bears at his house, north of Nipawin.

When Robert "Bud" Jardine got home from combining at about 2 a.m. CST on Sunday, he knew right away that something was wrong.

"I could see destruction had taken place," the 80-year-old said of his house in the RM of Torch River, north of Nipawin, Sask.

"The blinds on the windows were dragged out... there was broken glass, there was material laying all over the place."

Jardine could see his computer was on inside, but he couldn't see any movement, so he entered the house. That's when he heard the bear that was in there, too.

"I thought, 'This is not too healthy. I'm on the wrong side of the building here,'" Jardine said.

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Robert "Bud" Jardine stands in front of his home in the RM of Torch River, north of Nipawin. (Submitted by Shannon Jardine)

He stepped back out and into his truck. His guns were inside the house, with the bear.

"So the bear was in charge," he said. "It's in my house and it's got my guns. So I'm a little bit helpless."

To get cellphone service, Jardine drove up a hill. He called police who put him in touch with a conservation officer who said he would be there in 45 minutes.

Jardine then drove back to his house and shone his truck lights onto the broken window above his kitchen sink. That seemed to frighten the bear, which looked out the window and then crawled up on his sink and backwards out the window before running away.

When the conservation officer arrived, he and Jardine boarded up the broken window with plywood.

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The refrigerator in Robert Jardine's cabin was turned upside down and the bar knocked over. (Submitted by Robert Jardine)

Makeshift alarm

By now it was 5:30 a.m. and Jardine was tired. Before falling asleep, he made a makeshift bear alarm by stacking pots and pans and even his vacuum cleaner in front of the sink.

"If he gets in the house, it's only me and the bear and it's not that big of a house," Jardine said.

"There isn't a lot of room to move around and there's no retreat for me. I have to come forward."

At 7:25 a.m. the bear was back, ripping off the plywood and knocking the kitchen clock down and its battery out, preserving the exact time for Jardine to notice later.

Jardine jumped out of bed and opened his bedroom door.

"The bear had his head, full head, right in the window and I up and fired," Jardine said.

He then got dressed and went outside on his deck. The bear was gone, but there was a lot of blood from the deck leading into the forest.

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Bar stools were toppled by black bears who broke in to a cabin on Robert Jardine's property. (Submitted by Robert Jardine)

Bears raiding cabin

Then, Jardine noticed another bear heading through his yard toward a cabin not far from his house. He shot and killed that bear, too.

Later, Jardine realized the bears had been in the cabin for several days — turning over a refrigerator and biting through cans of food.

Jardine says in some years, bears in his area are worse than others. 

For now, he has borrowed a dog to help keep the animals out of his yard and is able to get some sleep.

"I slept damn good last night," he said.

"The dog really knew what it was doing and I appreciated having it. So yeah, I slept well."

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