Manchester Township police are asking residents to take precautions if they encounter a black bear that may be living in or around the township, Capt. Lisa Parker said.
The bear was spotted in the Roosevelt City section of the township on Wedneday morning and did not cause any significant disturbances, she said
"Manchester Township Police and the New Jersey Division of Fish and Wildlife responded and were able to move the bear into the boundaries of the Pasadena Wildlife Management Area, a tract of preserved land located in Ocean and Burlington counties," Parker said.
Black bears are wary of people by nature. But if the bear does wander back into any residential areas, Manchester police are asking residents to heed safety tips provided by the state Division of Fish and Wildlife website at (www.state.nj.us/dep/fgw/bearfacts_safetytips.htm):
· Never feed or approach a bear!
· Remain calm if you encounter a bear.
· Make the bear aware of your presence by speaking in an assertive voice, singing, clapping your hands, or making other noises.
· Make sure the bear has an escape route.
· If a bear enters your home, provide it with an escape route by propping all doors open.
· Avoid direct eye contact, which may be perceived by a bear as a challenge. Never run from a bear. Instead, slowly back away.
· To scare the bear away, make loud noises by yelling, banging pots and pans or using an air horn. Make yourself look as big as possible by waving your arms. If you are with someone else, stand close together with your arms raised above your head.
· The bear may utter a series of huffs, make popping jaw sounds by snapping its jaws and swat the ground. These are warning signs that you are too close. Slowly back away, avoid direct eye contact and do not run.
· If a bear stands on its hind legs or moves closer, it may be trying to get a better view or detect scents in the air. It is usually not a threatening behavior.
· Black bears will sometimes "bluff charge" when cornered, threatened or attempting to steal food. Stand your ground, avoid direct eye contact, then slowly back away and do not run.
· If the bear does not leave, move to a secure area.
· Report black bear damage or nuisance behavior to the DEP's 24-hour, toll-free hotline at 1-877-WARN DEP (1-877-927-6337).
· Families who live in areas frequented by black bears should have a "Bear Plan" in place for children, with an escape route and planned use of whistles and air horns.
· Black bear attacks are extremely rare. If a black bear does attack, fight back!
Please consult the Division of Fish and Wildlife’s “Know the Bear Facts: Black Bears in New Jersey” for additional information (www.state.nj.us/dep/fgw/bearfacts.htm).