Black bear spotted in Old Pekin

Black bear spotted in Old Pekin


The Black Bear is still on the move in Washington County…now to the East.

The bear that was tracked yesterday in southern Washington County moved overnight from the Big Springs area.

Sheriff Roger Newlon said this morning he had spotted the bear in Old Pekin.

Yeaterday afternoon, Newlon said the bear had stopped moving due to the heat.

“The bear has stopped moving due to the heat and will likely begin roaming around in the cool of the evening,” saidNewlon.

Yesterday morning Newlon and Pekin Town Marshall Jeff Thomas responded to four calls about seeing a Black Bear in southern Washington County.

The bear was originally spotted in Kentucky and then Harrison County over the past few days was on the move.

The bear had been spotted in the Palmyra Lake Road area and later on was spotted near Big Springs.

He said at this time they are not trying to trap the animal. Newlon also warned residents not to approach the bear.

“He’s been getting in trash cans and doing things bears do,” said Newlon.

Sheriff Roger Newlon provided this photo of the bear in Old Pekin this morning.

The bear was first spotted in Kentucky, then has crossed the river into Harrison County. He was seen behind the Wal-Mart in Corydon earlier this week and at a forest.

“We’re seeing tracks in the dew grass that indicate he’s moving north,” said Newlon. “If anyone see’s it, please call the Sheriff’s Department at 812.883.2834 and let us know. The DNR is tracking it.”

The Indiana Department of Natural Resources said this bear is believed to be the same one that was spotted in Hardin Co., Ky. a few weeks ago and in Harrison County, Indiana just this week.

Black bears are shy by nature and tend to avoid human contact. Attacks are rare.

The following are some tips from the Indiana DNR on bear awareness:

– Don’t intentionally feed bears. If a bear becomes accustomed to finding food near your home, it may become a “problem” bear.
– Eliminate food attractants by placing garbage cans inside a garage or shed.
– Clean and store grills away after use.
– Don’t leave pet food outside overnight.
– Remove bird feeders and bird food from late March through November.
– Don’t add meat or sweets to a compost pile.
– If encountering a bear, don’t run. Shout, wave your arms and back away slowly.
– Collect and remove low-hanging or fallen fruit from fruit trees.
– Eliminate meat, cooking oil, fish or fruit odors from near your home. This includes fish-meal fertilizers.
– Collect and remove any ripened vegetables from your garden.

This is the second bear spotted in Indiana in 2016 with the first being spotted in Northern Indiana back in April.

The DNR is encouraging citizens to report bear sightings or by calling (812) 334-1137 during regular business hours.

Photos or videos can be sent to the same email address. The maximum file size is 15 MB.

DNR biologists will monitor the bear to determine whether to allow it to remain where it is or trap it and relocate it to a more appropriate area. That will be based on whether the bear shows nuisance behavior and continues to come into close contact with humans.

The DNR has a procedure in place should the bear become a nuisance, according to Josh Griffin of the DNR Division of Fish & Wildlife.