HUDSON — While bears are not unheard of in northern Summit County, the latest visitor to the area is said to be from out of state.
City spokeswoman Jody Roberts said the city was informed by the Ohio Department of Natural Resources Division of Wildlife that a black bear known to have been on Steepleview Drive this past Sunday was tagged and is believed to be from Pennsylvania.
A phone call to the wildlife division seeking additional information was not immediately returned.
Roberts said the bear was not seen directly, but was caught wandering by a security camera that Steepleview residents had set up outside their home.
"They saw this after the fact. It was late at night," said Roberts.
A video clip of the bear can be seen on the city’s Facebook page.
Roberts said this is the only reported bear sighting in the city so far this year, but bears in the area are not unusual.
"Every year at this time, we have a bear or bears travel through Hudson. They head to parts beyond," she said.
"Generally, they’ve not caused any issue," Roberts added. "But obviously you don’t want to confront them …They usually walk through quickly. They’re usually in and out in a couple of days. They move on."
Twinsburg City Naturalist Stanley Stine said Wednesday there have been no reports of bears in the city so far this year and he does not remember any reports last year.
"We’re always looking, but these bears are very reclusive, like other wildlife that avoids us," he said.
But they have been spotted in the past.
"Several years ago, I think it was Herrick Road or something like that over there, they had several black bears at the same time in a backyard," said Stine.
Stine said bears have a wide ranging territory and where they may be hibernating in the area is uncertain since no dens, including in Liberty Park, have been positively identified.
But Stine said it is not surprising that they are being seen now.
"As of probably about the first of May, they’ve started emerging from their dens," he said.
According to a Division of Wildlife pamphlet, black bears are afraid of people and generally will run away, rather than attack people and pets, so long as they are not cornered.
If someone encounters a bear that is not aware of their presence, back slowly away. If the bear becomes aware of human presence, do not make eye contact, back slowly away and give the bear an escape route.
It is also advised that if bears are known to be in the area, no food should be left out where bears can get to it. This includes garbage, seed in bird feeders, pet food, grease on grills, and any agricultural foods, for example, berries on bushes should be picked as soon as possible. Also, those who keep honeybees should place electric fencing around the hives.
Reporter Jeff Saunders can be reached at 330-541-9431, firstname.lastname@example.org or @JeffSaunders_RP.