The Indiana Department of Natural Resources has confirmed that a black bear was spotted in the northeastern portion of Vanderburg County over the weekend near the Warrick County line.

According to the Indiana Department of Natural Resources, this is the fourth confirmed black bear in the Hoosier State. The reports come after a sighting confirmed last week near the Southern Illinois town of Crossville, just across the Wabash River from New Harmony, Indiana.

You may be asking if there is a threat of danger with the sighting. The short answer is yes and no. According to the Department of Natural Resources, black bears are rarely aggressive towards humans. They say the big concern is when bears begin to associate humans with food. This causes the bears to lose their healthy fear of humans and it creates problems. The bottom line is, don't feed the bears but it does go a little deeper than that even.

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To reduce the risk of a conflict with a bear, the Indiana Department of Natural Resources recommends,

  • Remove bird feeders and bird food if a bear is reported in your area.
  • Clean and store away grills after use.
  • Eliminate food attractants by placing garbage cans inside a garage or shed.
  • Pick ripe fruits and vegetables as soon as possible or place an electric fence around them to ensure bears cannot reach them.
  • Consolidate beehives you may have and place an electric fence around them.
  • Don't leave pet food outside overnight.
  • Don't add meat or sweets to a compost pile.

Additional recommendations in the event that you encounter a black bear may seem a little more obvious, but just in case... Observe the bear from a distance and do not try to feed it. You can announce your presence loudly by shouting something like "Hey, Bear!" (Thanks survival TV for teaching me that trick!) and slowly backing away. Do not turn and run and do not climb a tree. Find a secure structure to keep you safe until the bear leaves the area.

If you spot a bear, report your sighting to the Indiana Department of Natural Resources by using their form here.

Source: Indiana DNR Facebook]

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