ORLANDO, Fla. – A young black bear recently spotted in College Park was struck and killed by a car Thursday morning on Fairbanks Avenue, according to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission.
FWC bear biologists had been following the juvenile bear since Monday, the agency said in a statement. Orlando police warned at the time that “although the bear is cute, please do not approach,” with pictures of the bear emerging on social media showing it residing in a tree near Yale Street and Formosa Avenue.
The bear was still in College Park the next day, police said, as the FWC advised all non-residents of the area to stay away while it worked to retrieve the animal.
According to FWC, what happened Thursday marks the first time that a “dispersing” bear has been run over by a car in Orlando. The term “dispersing” references when juvenile bears begin to leave their mother’s home range, the statement reads.
In this situation, attempts were made to try and trap the bear for relocation but the bear continued to be on the move. Each situation may be different, but generally it is best practice for bears to be given plenty of space so that they will move away on their own.Communications, Division of Habitat and Species Conservation | Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission
More and more black bear sightings are reported in the Orlando area each year, FWC said.
People who feel threatened by a bear, observe a sick, injured, dead or orphaned bear or observe someone intentionally feeding bears or harming them are directed to contact FWC’s Wildlife Alert Hotline at 888-404-FWCC (3922).
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