Bears in the Hood

Adrian came running breathlessly up our driveway just as I was pulling in from work a few nights ago with exciting news.  He was breathless because he’d just been jogging up the mile-and-a-half hill to our house and seen…wait for it…a bear!

I’m so jealous.

We’ve known that at least one bear is hanging around our neighborhood all summer because most of our immediate neighbors have had their trashcans broken into, the contents strewn across driveways and yards.  One of our neighbors set up a Facebook page to document the comings and goings of our resident bear. She posted photos of the ursine visitor captured on a trail camera trying to get into the rubbish on her property.

The bear seemed to be visiting every one on our street except for us–and we were the ones who really wanted to see it! Alarmingly, the animal started raising the ire of a few residents who mused on the Facebook page about whether or not it could be removed–or killed–by Fish and Wildlife. Some people were worried that the bear might harm their children or pets.

I didn’t worry much about that.  Bears almost never attack humans–especially not the black bears we have in Vermont.  But I did worry a little bit that the bear would become habituated to humans and find so much food in our trash cans and bird feeders that it would stick around and become a nuisance.  That probably would lead to its demise.

So I guess I’ve been relieved, though a little bit bereft, to see the sightings dry up and cease. At least the bear would be safe!

And then Adrian saw it. A car had just passed by on the dirt road ahead of him and Adrian thinks that might have startled the bear into the woods.  So when Ade ran by, the bear was already in the trees but making a hell of a racket. Adrian peered in and saw a big black lump of a creature shuffling away.

This was just a quarter mile or so from our house so we took off in the car to see if we could spot it again when Adrian got home, but no luck. So I still haven’t seen the bear. But it’s definitely making me run a little faster when I head out for a jog on our road. Good motivation if nothing else!

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2 Responses to Bears in the Hood

  1. I have been looking for bear. This summer we took a train from Montreal to New Brunswick. Early in the morning I was sitting in the observation car. Of a sudden, I caught a glimpse of a large black bear sliding into the bush. It had, apparently been watching the train. Or more likely, it was eating berries alongside the tracks. So now I have seen the back half of a bear.

  2. Greg says:

    You are right to be concerned about even a Black Bear getting accustomed to human food scraps. The danger to the bear is far greater indeed that any perceived danger it poses to people — so long as it remains afraid of humans and out of their trash bins. Up in the Great North Woods they have locking steel dumpster lids for just this reason. BTW, have seen several black bears in Canada over the years. There was this roadside tourist with camera near Jasper who scurried back to his car as his worried wife looked on when the little bear gave a false charge. He was getting a tad too close to the furry little guy who evidently did not want his picture taken. (The bear and I had a little chuckle over than one. :-) )

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