With hunting season underway in New Jersey, rumors are swirling that beloved bipedal bear 'Pedals' has fallen victim to a sportsman seeking a one-of-a-kind kill.
The upright walking bear became a local legend and Internet sensation after video of the creature went viral last summer.
Since then, fans of Pedals have congregated on Facebook, sharing sighting reports of the animal and celebrating his bipedal style.
However, concerns were raised earlier this week when a hunter bragged on social media that he had successfully bagged poor Pedals.
This same person, fans say, has been on the hunt for Pedals over the last three seasons and may have finally accomplished his sinister goal of taking out the popular animal.
Unfortunately, attempts to determine if Pedals truly has crossed over to the 'other side' have proven fruitless.
In response to numerous inquiries, the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection says that it is impossible to know for certain if Pedals was registered as a kill by a hunter because there is no original DNA from the creature to verify such a scenario.
Intriguingly, the agency's statement also noted that leg injuries on bears that are brought into checkpoints are not an altogether rare occurrence, meaning that there may be more than one Pedals roaming the forests of New Jersey.
Nevertheless, until someone sees another bipedal bear walking around in the area, the mystery over Pedals' ultimate fate will likely go unsolved.