A hunter has caused outrage after filming himself spearing a black bear to death with a homemade weapon
Josh Bowmar, 26, from Columbus, Ohio, can be seen celebrating after killing the bear while hunting in Alberta, Canada.
But animal rights campaigners have condemned the killing, with the footage showing the bear sprinting away after the 7ft-long spear impales its body
The bear, lured to the spot by the smell of food, died a while later.
In the footage, Mr Bowmar can be seen waiting patiently for an opportune movement to spear the bear, which measured 7ft 1in and weighed over 392 pounds.
At the start of the 13-minute video, he appears disappointed as the bear runs away – believing that he may have missed his chance.
But when the bear returns two hours later, he launches the spear from around 15 yards away, capturing the moment it pierces the animal’s body using a GoPro camera attached to the weapon.
Mr Bowmar, who has his own fitness company, says on the film: ‘I can’t believe that that just happened.
‘I’ve just did something that I think no one in the world has ever done. And that was spear a bear on the ground, on film.’
Later, he describes his homemade weapon was an ‘absolutely lethal killing machine’.
The film then shows him finding the bear’s mangled body, which he and his companion drag out from behind some trees.
On examining the wound, the animal’s intestines can be seen hanging out from the body.
Wendy Higgins, from Humane Society International, said the video was a ‘tragic example’ of ‘mindless machismo-fuelled blood-lust’.
She said: ‘This poor bear didn’t stand a chance, deliberately lured to the killing spot by food, and then mercilessly targeted and left to die in agony.
‘It is shocking to see the delight of this hunter in what he has done, his thrill utterly appalling to the majority of people, and even fellow hunters are distancing themselves from this incident.
‘Animals are not trophies, and bears and other awesome creatures around the world need us to channel our collective disgust at this and say no more to this selfish brutality.’
Mr Bowmar said in a statement to The Daily Mail: ‘First and foremost, spear hunting gives the animal the greatest chance of escape, considering our ethical killing range is within 10 yards.’
He added: ‘The spear blade I was using was five inches wide and 16 inches long, and razor sharp . Not to mention, I got 24 inches of penetration on that bear, causing more damage and trauma to the bear than any arrow/broadhead/bullet combination could ever cause.
‘It is a well known fact from spear hunters across the world, including Tim Wells who has speared over 100 animals to date, a spear will kill an animal twice as fast as an arrow will.
‘Just think about how much larger a blade on a spear is compared to a broad head on an arrow.’
He continued: ‘The bear I speared only ran 60 yards and died immediately, that’s as humane and ethical as one could get in a hunting situation on big game animals.
‘Trust me, no one cares more about these animals than us hunters, especially me.
‘If I just wanted to kill, why not use a rifle and shoot the animal from 500 yards away with it having no chance to escape.’
He said that ‘since the dawn of man, the spear has been a vital role in survival’ and added that those criticizing spear hunting ‘should be ashamed’ for ‘trying to kill a heritage that has existed for over a million years’.
Mr Bowmar added: ‘I’m not alone with caring about animals in fact over 90 per cent of all donated money and time to animal conservation is from hunters. That’s an interesting fact to ponder. The truth is we care more than anyone about these animals.’
On his YouTube channel, Mr Bowmar writes: ‘We love travelling the world and hunting big game with bow and arrow only.
‘We seek after the biggest most challenge game that walk this earth.’
A number of videos have been posted on the channel showing him and his wife Sarah shooting different animals with bow and arrows, including an African impala.