November 9, 2016

Juvenile Black Bear Sighted in August Remains Interested in Our Neighborhood

To the Editor:

Residents in the northern part of Princeton should be advised that the juvenile black bear sighted in August in the vicinity of Cherry Hill Road and Montadale Drive is still in the immediate area. While the media has lost interest in the story, the bear appears to remain stubbornly interested in our neighborhood. It has caused property damage and has raided garbage cans and bird feeders over the past several months, which begins to define it as a nuisance bear that is becoming habituated to humans. We have notified NJDEP/Fish and Wildlife and the Animal Control Officer, but it is largely up to us as residents to take steps to discourage the bear from deciding to make the Princeton Ridge its home.

We can make a difference by ensuring that there are no sources of food in our yards. Bird feeders are a prominent target as are garbage cans left out overnight and piles of acorns. Consider taking down feeders for now (the birds will be fine) and putting out your garbage cans in the morning rather than leaving them outside on the street. Do not leave pet food outside. This bear is capable of climbing a wire deer fence and breaking into containers in search of food. Fish and Wildlife has also advised that hanging towels or rags soaked with ammonia may also discourage bear activity. Bears are crepuscular, so they are much more likely to be active at dawn and dusk and less likely to be seen in broad daylight.

By taking these precautions, we can help persuade the bear to move on to other areas.

For more information on bear safety, see

T. Jeffery Clarke 

Balcort Drive