Bear sightings create buzz in Hantsport
Residents of Hantsport, N.S. say a bear is creating quite a commotion in their community.
At first, Savannah Cruickshank thought the animal was a big dog. She was shocked when she realized it was a black bear hanging out at the local soccer field.
“It was just roaming around … my boyfriend was like ‘grab your phone, grab your phone, you’ve got to take a picture of this and show everybody.’”
But that wasn’t the only bear sighting, and it wasn’t the first.
“Yesterday, like three or four people seen bears. I don’t know if it was the same or what,” says Cruickshank.
In nearby Avonport, Jess Fuller spotted a bear during his Sunday morning run.
“About two kilometres into it, I saw this animal crossing the road, and at first I thought it was just a large dog, and then I realized it was a bear and I got scared and ran to the nearest neighbour,” says Fuller.
Wildlife biologist Soren Bondrup-Nielsen says the Department of Natural Resources estimates there are roughly 10,000 black bears in Nova Scotia, but they are seldom seen.
He also says it’s typically food that attracts them.
“In the early spring or early summer, there isn’t all that much natural food … bears are basically vegetarians, but they will obviously eat meat,” says Bondrup-Nielsen.
He says residents shouldn’t be worried, but they should use common sense.
“Don’t put meat in the compost, don’t have a barbecue and then throw meat or the bones of whatnot around.”
And if you do come face-to-face with a bear, he says to ‘make noise, appear big, and they’ll take off.’
The Department of Natural Resources says it’s aware of the situation, but they haven’t seen the bear. A spokesperson says they won’t be setting a trap, but they will be keeping an eye out.
With files from CTV Atlantic's Jacqueline Foster