Living with Bears

JANESVILLE- You might not get chased down by a bald-headed bear, like John Candy in The Great Outdoors, but how about a bear in the backyard or bear at the door?

"The bear has to recognize you as not a threat," said Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources Wildlife Technician Brian Buenzow.

A black bear has been seen moseying its way through Winnebago and Boone Counties. The Wisconsin DNR says don't run if you cross paths with it.

"Put some distance between you and the bear. Not quickly, not by running, but by backing away," said Buenzow.

Buenzow believes the bear spotted in the Stateline is mostly likely young and looking for habitat.

The DNR only traps a bear if it becomes a nuisance.

"They set a live trap and the bear gets in there. It’s on wheels. It's called a culvert trap, it’s bigger around than a bear, and it's a live trap. They hook it up to a trailer hitch and tow it out with a truck and let the bear go somewhere else," explained Buenzow.

Somewhere else, like being hunted. This is legal during certain seasons in Wisconsin.

Buenzow said the most important tip for living with bears is "in the Midwest and Wisconsin black bears are a hunted species. They’re just as afraid of you, or more afraid of you, then you are of them."

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