Hey, Bear! Reducing human-wildlife conflict for the safety of all
June 3, 2019
BUCKHANNON, WV: This afternoon, a bear or bears wandered into the Camden Avenue area. They have now moved on and are no longer in the City limits, but are highly mobile and residents should remain cautious. The Buckhannon Police Department and West Virginia Division of Natural Resources are working together to trap and remove the bears to a more remote location.
The City of Buckhannon has received several visits from our bear neighbors today and in recent weeks. Should you be alarmed? No, but use caution: when there is an active alert of any kind–including those regarding wildlife–follow the instructions provided via the emergency alert system.
We live in wild and wonderful West Virginia, and sometimes the ‘wild’life comes to visit and generally does not cause any problems. However, we can still take precautions to reduce danger when living in areas where bear, and other wildlife, are present.
- If you leave food outdoors for pets or birds, please bring it inside at night. This will reduce the likelihood of attracting unwanted guests, such as raccoons, opossums, and yes, even black bears.
- When walking in secluded areas that have a high likelihood of bear presence, shout, “Hey, Bear!” or make other loud noises that will alert bears of your presence so they can exit the area. They are more scared of you than the other way around.
- Keep dogs on a leash when you go for a walk. Bears are more likely to be stressed if they encounter a dog than a human.
- If you do encounter a bear, just let it be, make yourself appear large by raising your arms, and back away slowly. Most likely they are going to run to get away from you.
- If it makes you feel more comfortable, carry pepper or bear spray with you for general safety.
For more on human-wildlife contact and how to prevent these types of encounters, visit www.bearwise.org.
To sign up for the City of Buckhannon and Upshur County emergency alert system:
Media: Callie Cronin Sams, firstname.lastname@example.org or (304) 472-1651