VIDEO: Black Bear Visits Nokesville Home

| December 17, 2017 | 0 Comments | News

A black bear, which are common to the area, visited Nokesville resident Monica Lambert several times last week. Photo courtesy of Monica Lambert.

Nokesville resident Monica Lambert and her husband dealt with an unwanted visitor for several nights last week; a black bear rummaged through the garbage and bird feeders at her home on Homestead Drive.

“We have never seen a bear and especially not one this close to our house,” Lambert said.

There have been a number of black bear sightings in the Haymarket, Gainesville, Nokesville and Bristow in the past year.

“We watched him out from our deck door. He didn’t seem scared of us,” she said. “My hubby finally grabbed his gun and opened the door; the bear started walking away and my hubby shot a warning shot next to him to scare him and the bear took off running.”

However, the bear returned later that evening and remained for another hour.

“He ate all our bird feed in the feeders as well as helped himself to a stash in a compartment we keep closed on the deck,” she said. “He broke all our feeders and ate all the seeds we had so I’m not sure what he came back for bc he ate everything already.”

According to the Virginia Department Game and Inland Fisheries, bears typically avoid humans, but they may be attracted to food sources in residential areas, such as garbage cans, pet foods, grills, livestock feeds, compost, beehives and bird feeders.

While unprovoked bear attacks are very rare and have never been documented in Virginia, if residents encounter a bear at home, DGIF suggests:

  • Stay calm. If you see a bear and it has not seen you, calmly leave the area. As you move away, make noise to let the bear discover your presence.
  • Stop. Back away slowly while facing the bear.
  • Give the bear plenty of room to escape. Bears rarely attack people unless they feel cornered or provoked.
  • Do not run or make any sudden movements. Running could prompt the bear to give chase, and you cannot outrun a bear. If on a trail, step off the trail and slowly leave the area.
  • If there is a bear in your yard and it approaches you, make yourself look big and make loud noises. Remain at a safe distance and throw rocks to make the bear feel unwelcome.
  • If there is a bear in your house prop open all doors to the outside and get out of the way of the exit. Never close a bear into a room. Make noises and yell at bear to leave the house. Don’t approach the bear but make sure it knows it is violating your territory.
  • If you surprise a bear speak softly. This may reassure the bear that you mean it no harm.
  • Fight back. If a black bear attacks you, fight back. Black bears have been driven away when people have fought back with rocks, sticks, binoculars and even their bare hands.

They also warn that it is unlawful to place, distribute, or allow the placement of food, minerals, carrion, trash, or similar substances to feed or attract bears.

Lambert said her neighbor, whom the bear visited as well,  contacted the Prince William County to have the bear relocated.

“She asked to have him relocated but they said that the bear population in other areas is already overcrowded,” she said.

© 2017, Bristow Beat. All rights reserved.

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