Police say they have found a human body in a forest in northern Japan that could be the latest victim in a series of suspected bear attacks.
Police and firefighters on Friday were searching for 74-year-old Tsuwa Suzuki in the forest in Kazuno City, Akita Prefecture. She had been missing for two days.
Suzuki is believed to have gone into the forest to collect edible wild plants. Her car was parked nearby. The police believe the body is Suzuki’s.
They say the body was severely damaged, and that the person may have been attacked by a bear.
In the same area, three men looking for bamboo shoots died in May. All are believed to have been killed by bears.
The chief of a bear park in the prefecture, Takeshi Komatsu, says that, given the proximity of the locations, it could be the same bear in all the attacks. He says such a bear might have come to regard humans as food. He warns that ringing bells and making noise, which usually keeps bears away, may not work on this particular bear.
City officials are calling on people to refrain from entering the area’s forests.
Source and image: NHK