Black bear prowls for food in LeRoy
Submitted by Amy Weidner on September 30, 2009 - 1:50pm
A black bear has been seen on Vallance Road in LeRoy.
The first sighting was reported two weeks ago by a concerned LeRoy citizen but others say the bear has been in the area for at least a month.
"We first saw him in the field where there was corn being chopped, from there he went down Vallance Road," said the citizen who reported the incident.
Residents also noted that at a neighbor's house, the bear knocked over some garbage cans and had been attracted to, and damaged, both of their bird feeders. The citizen tells of other reports around town that the bear has been spotted near the Thruway exit.
Pat Flaherty, a Vallance Road resident, said, "The first time the bear came here was during the night when it knocked down bales of hay in our yard that were being used for archery." She said that happened about a week ago.
"It completely took down a big birdhouse on a pole and had broken down a clothesline that (we found) lying on the ground," she said.
On Aug. 22, a LeRoy resident shot this photo of the bear in his yard enjoying yet another bird feeder. The incident was reported to DEC that same day. Below is a picture taken early in the morning on Sept. 28 of bear prints across the same resident's driveway.
According to the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, 80 percent of bear sightings are related to bird feeders. The DEC says, "Although many people find it difficult to believe, an animal as large and powerful as black bear is readily attracted to bird feeders as a source of food."
It is important to break them of this habit because the bear will associate the areas with bird feeders as a good place to get food. Removing the feeders is the only sure way to avoid attracting bears. The DEC claims that "bears that learn to approach one house will approach other houses."
Other options include bringing the feeder in at night and removing excess seed. Without available food, the bear shouldn’t return to the area.
In the event of a black bear sighting, it is advised that you contact the DEC at 585-226-6335.