A bear decided to come into town early this morning. The bear, estimated to be between 200-300 pounds, was first reported by two callers at around 12:27 a.m. today, October 20, in the W. 16th Ave and Oakpatch area, where the callers advised it to be near a pool in the Devonshire Hill Apartments. Police responded and were unable to locate it.
At 2:35 a.m., the next call came in from the 3500 block of W. 18th Avenue where the caller advised the bear was in the parking lot of a church near a fence. The bear went into the back yard of a home in the 2300 block of Blackburn and then walked on the bike path. EPD notified the Oregon State Police about the bear and they advised EPD to stay back from the bear so that it would not be startled and would head back into the woods. At 4:54 a.m., a caller advised the bear was in a driveway at the 2700 block of Timberline knocking over trash. In all it generated four calls, and foraged in yards, knocking over a couple of fences as it travelled. Police last spotted the bear in the 2300 block of Kevington, where a photo was taken.
This is a reminder for people in that area to be observant and keep their children and pets close when recreating in natural areas. Eugene has many natural areas and parks that are home to a wide variety of wildlife. These natural areas are one of the many attractive aspects of Eugene. Deer, squirrels, and birds live in these areas, but there may also be occasional, stray visits from cougars and other predators. Eugene has areas that are close to forested and rural areas where bears and cougars reside. People should always be respectful of the fact that all wildlife is in fact “wild” and should be given a wide berth.
For more information about bears and other wildlife, please contact Oregon State Police and Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife.
Here is a link to ODFW pages with information/tips about “Living with Wildlife” (black bears).