The bear was captured by bear management agents patrolling suburban Albuquerque. They caged it, but failed to follow bear confinement protocol, including creating safe boundaries.
The bear stuck its snout between the bars and nipped off the tip of Jesus Pena's finger.
"I guess I should've backed up a little bit and not be as close as I was," Jesus said.
"We are going to review everything that's happened, find out what happened and go from there," Game and Fish spokesperson Martin Frentzel said.
The department says only one agent was on cage duty, when regulations require two.