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Black Bear Sighting in Downtown Rockville

Police say a black bear was sighted strolling the streets of downtown Rockville Thursday.

Black bear (Patch file photo)
Black bear (Patch file photo)

Now there’s something you don’t see every day: a black bear roaming the streets near downtown Rockville.

The bear was spotted near Maryland Avenue and South Washington Street near Rockville City Hall Thursday morning, according to the Rockville Police Department’s Facebook page.

"The bear spotted today has made no aggressive movements," Lt. Eric Over said in a news release.

Police attempted to redirect the bear from residential areas toward its natural habitat in the rural area.

The Rockville police confirmed late Thursday morning that they had lost sight of the bear and they no longer considered it a danger to the community.

Maryland’s Department of Natural Resources says that during the warmer months, bear sightings in population centers are not entirely uncommon.

“In early summer each year, young bears disperse, or move out, to find territory of their own,” Harry Spiker, DNR game mammal section Leader said in an earlier Patch story.

Earlier this week, a black bear was spotted in Wheaton roaming residential streets and rummaging through trash cans.

Here are some black bear safety tips from the Montgomery Parks website:

  • Never feed bears or other wildlife (intentionally or unintentionally). Feeding bears is illegal in Maryland.

  • Don’t leave bowls of pet food or water outside. If possible, keep all pet food indoors at all times.

  • Keep garbage in sturdy, clean containers with tight fitting lids. (Bear proof cans are recommended in areas where bear interactions become common.) Secure all trash cans and clean them regularly to minimize strong food odors as much as possible.

  • Keep compost that contains food materials in enclosed bins away from your residence.

  • Keep bird feeders out of reach.

  • Keep barbeque grills clean and secure.

  • Always walk your dogs on a leash.

  • Do not tolerate bears becoming comfortable around your yard – encourage them to leave by making loud noises, etc.

To report a black bear sighting, call Rockville Animal Control at 240-314- 8900, or the Maryland Natural Resources department at 410-260-8540.
BETTY WOODS June 19, 2014 at 04:42 PM
Saw a small cub in Damascus a few weeks ago, definitely not a young male looking for territory. The size of this cub would indicate that mom would have been nearby. I understand that nursing female bears can be dangerous.

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