Black bear visits Pinebrook stairwell
June 2, 2007
A black bear with cinnamon-brown fur and a torn left ear has been frequenting a Pinebrook neighborhood.
The bear walked up a staircase at the Pine Creek condominiums near Kilby Road on Wednesday as steaks were being grilled nearby, Pinebrook resident Judyann Klco said.
"People are starting to worry about their children," she said. "[The bear] was in the stairwell of the basement apartment."
Wildlife officers believe the animal is the same young bear that was spotted near the condos on May 21, Klco said.
"The bear is back. This is the second week this bear has been around and he is coming down now and associating this whole area with food," she said.
This week the bear escaped into the woods around 7 p.m. before officials could tranquilize and remove the animal from the neighborhood.
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"The best thing is to have your kids travel in pairs if they can," Klco said. "And be bear savvy."
Bears breed in June and the animal seen in Pinebrook might be searching for a mate, said Dave Swenson, a conservation officer with the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources.
"My husband first sighted [the bear] after the police chased it into our units," Klco said. "[The bear] has definitely lost his way."
Adult black bears can grow to weigh 300 pounds. But the bear spotted in Snyderville likely weighed only about 125, Swenson said, adding that the last bear he recalled in western Summit County was a few years ago in Deer Valley.
He advises people who encounter a black bear to not make eye contact and to back away while waving their arms and making noise.
"Give the bear its space," Swenson said.
The bear in Pinebrook must be tranquilized and removed from the neighborhood to save its life, Klco insists.
"A fed bear is a dead bear," she said, adding that the black bear was seen rummaging through garbage at Albertsons near Jeremy Ranch.
Still, the bear wasn’t aggressive toward people.
"There is an easement of wide grassy area that he comes down through from those Pinebrook trails," Klco explained.
The bear interrupted girls practicing lacrosse at Ecker Hill Middle School when it eluded officers via the playing field, she said.
"We watched him until he disappeared," Klco said.