A farmer was killed by a wild bear in a reserve forest in Ramanagaram taluk on Friday, even as his wife watched helplessly.

The Ramanagaram police identified the victim as Mahadevaiah (35).

The victim and his wife Lakshmi were returning home after collecting fodder for their sheep when the bear attacked him.

Forest Department officials at Ramanagaram, quoting Ms. Lakshmi, told The Hindu that Mahadevaiah, following the attack, collapsed and died.

Lakshmi watched helplessly the attack before she left the spot and sought help from those working in an agricultural field, the officials said.

Then, a group of villagers went into the forest to rescue the victim.

However, it was said, the bear was “guarding the body” when the villagers reached the spot. The animal left the spot after seeing the villagers, the officials said.

A resident B.T. Nagarajaiah said that there have been many wild bear have attacks in the past two years.

Nagarajaiah and Dodda Hulugaiah of Thimmasandra were killed in bear attacks in the last two weeks.

Also, nearly half-a-dozen villagers have been injured in such attacks in Thimmasandra, Arali Marada Doddi, Jogi Doddi and Kona Muddana Halli, he said.

The villagers have urged the forest officials to take steps against such attacks.

More In: Karnataka | National