A bear sighting in the Briarwood Drive area of Dumfries has Prince William County Police reminding folks of bear safety.
The bear was spotted very late Tuesday night into Wednesday morning said Sharon Richardson, public information specialist for the Prince William County Police Department.
Here are some tips from the police department:
If you spot a bear, keep a respectful distance. If a bear is up a tree or on your property, give it space. Bring your pets inside and leave the immediate area.
If you see a bear cub, do NOT try to remove it from the area or “rescue it.” Female bears who may give birth while hibernating in the winter den will wanted to find food, usually with her cubs in tow. If she feels nervous, she will typically send her cubs up a tree and leave the immediate area.
Remove food sources that might attract hungry bears. This includes bird feeders, garbage, pet food, outdoor grills, livestock food, compost, fruit trees and beehives. Virginia’s bears are primarily active and very hungry in the spring and early summer, so temporarily removing these items, or scrupulously cleaning them if you can’t remove them, should help.
Do not store household trash – or anything that smells like food – in vehicles, on porches, or decks. Keep your full or empty trash containers secured in a garage, shed or basement. If you do not have a trash collection service, take your garbage to the Landfill frequently (twice a week or more). If you do have a trash collection service, put your garbage out the morning of the pickup rather than the night before.
Take down your birdfeeders temporarily until the bear moves on.
Consider installing electric fencing, an inexpensive and extremely efficient, proven deterrent to bears, around dumpsters, gardens, beehives or other potential food sources.
If you experience a bear problem after taking appropriate preventative steps, you may notify the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries regional office. Visit the website at www.dgif.virginia.gov for more information.