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Bear Sighted at Two Haymarket Schools

| May 31, 2016 | 0 Comments | News
Bear sighting at Hopewell Landing in Gainesville, last week.

Bear sighting at Hopewell Landing in Gainesville, last week.

Prince William County Schools is reporting that there have been recent and continuous bear sightings at schools in Haymarket.

A bear was seen at both Tyler Elementary and PACE West. Both of those schools are located on Washington Avenue in Haymarket.

“Due to the increase in bear sightings reported to police, we would like to provide the following safety tips…” said Irene Cromer, Supervisor of Community Relations for Prince William County Schools.

The following are tips provided by the Prince William Police Department:

Homeowners and businesses should remove food sources. Common attractions include bird feeders, pet food, grills and trash containers. We do not want the bears to become accustomed to people. Once that happens, the bear must be destroyed.

Black bears, which are the ones found in this area, are omnivores. They do not hunt animals or people and typically eat berries and plants, but may occasionally feed on deceased small mammals.

Females will become aggressive when protecting a cub.

At this time of year, bears are making preparations for denning and may forage up to 20 hours per day. Their habitat is decreasing, so sightings are not as uncommon as in the past.

Obviously, if any animal is posing an immediate threat to you or the public, lethal means may be utilized to stop the threat if conditions and surroundings support such action.

Just because a bear has been seen does not mean it poses a threat. They are foraging. Once a “human placed” food source is removed, the bear will usually return to its normal diet in the woods.

Please advise Animal Control via email or phone call of any reported sightings. For each sighting, we contact the State Game Warden.

The State frowns upon us setting any trap for bears. We can no longer trap/tranquilize and relocate. They have told us that if we trap or tranquilize, we must kill the animal. Therefore, we will exhaust all other remedies prior to creating such a situation.

Further information and a video for the public can be foundĀ :http://www.dgif.virginia.gov/wildlife/bear/

© 2016, Bristow Beat. All rights reserved.

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