DEC encourages residents of the Southern Tier to help avoid conflicts with bears

Local News

FILE — A black bear and cub share a spot in tall grass off a road in Anchorage, Alaska, on Tuesday, Aug. 8, 2017. (AP Photo/Mark Thiessen)

ELMIRA, N.Y. (WETM) – Summertime in the Twin Tiers brings a new threat of bears. Bears are more common now as mating season coincides with young bears looking for their new homes. With more sightings in the area over recent weeks, the New York Department of Environmental Conservation is encouraging New Yorkers to take a few steps in order to avoid conflicts with bears. 18 News spoke with Fish and Wildlife Technician Kelly Raab who shares what to do when you come in contact with one.

“If you’re in the wild and you come across a bear, just respect them. They are large animals that are capable of doing some serious damage. But the good news is they seldomly do. As long as they know you’re there and you’re keeping your distance you are likely to be safe. Just don’t do anything really dumb like get really close to get a good photograph,” said Raab.

Kelly also went on to say how keeping your house free of smells and securing your garbage as bears have the best sense of smell of any animal in the world.

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