Giant 700 lb. 7 ft. Hibernating Bear Harvested by Wisconsin Corn Combine, ***Updated

Thread starter #1
*** See Post #16 for Story Update!!!

Details & pic from:

On November 26, the Wisconsin DNR was called in and estimated its weight at 700 to 720 pounds and might potentially be larger than the state record. Schlough was planning a full-body mount, but taxidermists will have to use a grizzly bear form to mount the huge bruin.—Gerry Bethge

This one weighed 618 pounds field-dressed and would have weighed 700 to 720 pounds when alive. It measured 7 feet long. The bear is considered quite large by Wisconsin standards, although no information was available on whether it was record size.

Black bears typically are 5 to 6 feet long and weigh 250 to 600 pounds, but they have been recorded at nearly 8 feet long and more than 800 pounds.

The taxidermist estimated the bear's age at between 15 and 20 years but said he would extract a tooth and try to get a more precise age.

By Joe Knight Leader-Telegram staff It was the night before Thanksgiving and Neil Schlough was combining corn when he hit something large and black.

His first impression was that one of the steers had gotten out, eaten too much corn and died.

Upon closer inspection, he saw it was a big bear that was hibernating in the corn. The impact of the combine killed the bear.

“I saw the bear yesterday morning at Tom Persons when I dropped my deer off to get stuffed. The story is it had started digging a hole in the corn field Neil did not see it, it was on the outside row of the combine and he drove a spout into the lungs. Tom guessed the bear to be 15-20 yrs old he will pull a tooth when he starts to process it. The skull should be in that 22 inch range. The state record is 22 12/16. The Dunn county record is 21 9/16. Schloughs had to pay $75 to keep the bear. They are getting a full body mount that will cost around $3000 .”

However, a quick background check indicates that although the photo might well have been taken from an odd angle, the story is indeed very true.


Last edited:


Senior Member
he was hibernating dummy!

prolly made for a bit of a bumpy combine ride
:rofl: :rofl:

Ok, I read it wrong...... while reading "I saw the bear yesterday when I went to drop my deer off......"......

I was thinking the guy that ran over it saw it the day before.. :banginhe :bounce:

Besides... I hibernate on a nightly basis, but think I could hear a combine coming at me! :bounce:
Thread starter #7
Lots of uncommon, unexpected surprises & rare occurences about this that got my attention that I thought others may find interesting::bounce:

The photos are after the bear was field dressed so it can be even up to 20% larger with the guts in it for a remarkable body size & length, had to use a grizzly form to mount it, head size, high age, being charged more at the game cooler because of it's size, difficulty in find a large enough game cooler, never heard of a bear hibernating in a "field" in a shallow 1.5 ft. dug out area, bear was a very "heavy" sleeper (close to Thanksgiving meal time & before winter) even in loud noises more than my dad was when I was a kid trying to wake him, bear hunting with corn combines like occasional deer accidents, etc.:rofl:
Last edited:
Strange photo

Is it me or is there nothing holding it up? I don't see any straps or ropes or chains.
If you look at the bears back there is some shading on the background, but the ladder is not casting any shading.
I don't know, I think this is a doctored up photo, look at the woman standing beside it then the man standing beside it. plus the story just sounds fishy to me. and the part at the end saying that it may be an odd angle for the photo but the story is very true.....I mean come on, thats like this guy I know, every time he tells some far fetched story, he starts it off by saying "this is the God's truth" only people who are trying to pull your chain say stuff like that. Besides, hibernating already at thanksgiving, that's when our bear season is held here in PA, the week of Thanksgiving.
Last edited:


Senior Member
looks like she got caught with her hand in the cookie jar :rofl:
Thread starter #16
Bear Illegally Shot Before Combine Accident

Updated: 1/29/2009 11:42:05 PM

Phyllis Schlough steadied a large black bear that was killed in November on her farm north of Menomonie.

DNR: Bear was shot dead before hit by combine

By Joe Knight
Leader-Telegram staff

A 57-year-old North Dakota man accused of illegally shooting a large black bear in Dunn County during November's deer gun hunting season is expected to be charged.

The bear, which may have weighed more than 700 pounds, was initially reported to have been killed by a combine.

The hunter, a former Dunn County resident, was hunting Nov. 25 on the Schlough farm, 20 miles north of Menomonie, when he shot the bear, according to the state Department of Natural Resources.

The DNR is not releasing the name of the accused shooter and other details of the case until the Dunn County district attorney files charges.

The suspected bear shooter, of West Fargo, N.D., has admitted to shooting the bear, after being interviewed by conservation wardens from North Dakota and Minnesota, according to state officials.

The Leader-Telegram reported in a Dec. 11 story that the bear had been killed by a combine the evening of Nov. 26 while it was hibernating in a field of standing corn, based on an interview with Phyllis Schlough, who owns the farm with her husband, Neil, who drove the combine.

A warden inspected the bear and, after some haggling, sold it to the Schloughs for $75. Phyllis Schlough said they intended to have it mounted.

The Schloughs are not expected to be charged with any wildlife violations, and the story they told the DNR and the media about hitting the hibernating bear with a combine may be essentially correct, said David Hausman, a warden supervisor with the DNR based in Baldwin. However, it is also clear that the bear had already been shot when Neil Schlough encountered it while harvesting corn, Hausman said.

"It was definitely dead when he hit it with the combine," he said.

The DNR has confiscated what remains of the bear from a taxidermist, including the hide and skull. An inspection of the skin showed two bullet holes, Hausman said.

The Schloughs will get their $75 back but not the rest of the bear, he said.

"The statutes state that unlawfully taken wildlife shall be retained by the state," Hausman said. Also, the DNR has a policy of using "exceptional" wildlife specimens for education or displaying them in a public place, he said.

The field-dressed bear weighed about 618 pounds when it was weighed on Thanksgiving, Phyllis Schlough said. It may have weighed more than 700 pounds when alive, which is unusually large for a black bear.

The DNR warden who inspected the bear initially didn't suspect the bear had been shot, but additional information caused wardens to take a closer look at its remains, Hausman said. The DNR will release more details after charges are filed.

A red flag for wardens was that a man hunting with the accused shooter tried to buy a bear permit the day it was shot.

"After they killed the bear, they thought they could find a permit for a bear, not knowing how the season framework works in Wisconsin," Hausman said.

By late November the state's bear season had been over for weeks, and hunters who apply for bear permits must wait for years to receive one, he said.

Bears are measured for the record book based on the dimensions of the skull, not on weight. Hausman said he expected the skull would be measured once it has gone through a required drying period.

"It is big," he said. "Whether it's a state record of some sort, we're not sure yet."

The Schloughs could not be reached for comment Thursday.