On a dare the man jumped a barricade and proceeded to approach a startled bear who in turn grabbed the man’s arm, locking into it, who was then able to punch the female bear and run away.
The incident at the bear den which parallels a busy street, came to happen in full view of many stunned onlookers, many who had been anticipating a tragedy.
One witness who took photos and later posted online, said he suspected that the man, who was with a friend, was either drunk or on drugs from the way he had been behaving.
Told Maria Krakowial, head of predatory animals at the zoo vial local press: ‘We do not know how the man escaped but she grabbed his arm. It then looks like he tried to hit her.
‘The enclosure is heavily ringed off and no one in their right mind would try and get in there. What his thinking was, we have no idea. He survived but we don’t know where he went.’
Police are now searching for the mystery intruder.
A police spokesman said that they found a bracelet they believe belonged to him, as well as traces of blood.
The zoo currently has three bears that it received from a circus a few years ago.
Reiterated the animal caretaker: ‘Sabina is the bear this man approached and he’s lucky because she is generally friendly.
‘Perhaps that’s why he survived – because she is more familiar with people. If it had been one of the others the story would probably be different.’