(KRON) — A young black bear lumbered into one Marin County neighborhood on Tuesday and wildlife experts are urging local residents to stay calm.
A home security camera recorded the bear when it first appeared in the Terra Linda area of San Rafael on Tuesday morning. WildCare and Marin Humane’s wildlife experts emphasized that black bears are shy animals that usually prefer to avoid people.
“Seeing a black bear in a populated area of Marin County warrants raised awareness and some
common-sense precautions, but WildCare and Marin Humane urge residents not to panic,” wildlife experts wrote.
The San Rafael bear is likely a juvenile male traveling alone in search of food and a mate, according to experts. May, June, and July are typical months for juvenile bears to leave their mother’s territory and strike out on their own, searching for territory to call their own.
The San Rafael bear will wander back into the wilderness on its own after it fails to find what it’s looking for, experts said.
“Since he’s such a rarity, this bear is not likely to find a mate in our area. But, without vigilance on the part of Marin residents, this bear could certainly find a smorgasbord of good, and easily-
accessible food sources, and this could encourage him to stay local,” WildCare and Marin Humane wrote.
Residents can help encourage the bear to leave the area by removing all potential food sources, including garbage cans, pet food left outside, fallen fruit, and bird feeders.
“Allowing the bear to become accustomed to humans will reduce his natural wariness of people, and lead to conflicts, almost always to the detriment of the bear. Removing food sources and staying away from the bear will keep him safe and alive, so let the animal’s natural fear of people encourage him to leave our area,” WildCare and Marin Humane wrote.
The bear is generating curiosity around the neighborhood. But following the bear for any reason, including snapping photographs, is a very bad idea, experts said. Give the bear plenty of space.
“In the event that you encounter the bear, stay calm, do not run or climb a tree, and back away
slowly. You can encourage the bear to move along by making noises like clapping or yelling. A
black bear will prefer to exit the scene without confronting humans,” WildCare and Marin Humane wrote.
WildCare and Marin Humane are collecting information on sightings of the bear. If you see the bear, call WildCare at 415-456-7283, or Marin Humane at 415-883-4621, to report location information.