Bear cub hides in downtown Brevard tree - FOX Carolina 21

Bear cub hides in downtown Brevard tree

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The bear hiding in the tree in downtown Brevard. (May 29, 2013/FOX Carolina) The bear hiding in the tree in downtown Brevard. (May 29, 2013/FOX Carolina)
BREVARD, NC (FOX Carolina) -

A local town was mesmerized by a young bear Wednesday afternoon in the middle of downtown Brevard.

The yearling got scared and ran for cover. The safe place he chose was a tree, and it took hours of coaxing to get him down.

The bear was a sneaky little guy, as emergency services and the North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission waited for him at the base of a tree. He played a disappearing act before they finally grabbed him.

The capture was quick, but the year-and-a-half-old black bear had a bit of a traumatic day. Witnesses said it had been hit by a car, ran across Main Street and eventually into a parking lot and up a tree.

Justin McVey, a biologist with the North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission, said that climbing a tree is a bear's natural response when it's in danger.

He was concerned that the bear was hurt, but watching him climb up and down the branches was a good sign.

The main issue was how to get the bear down from the tree, with people snapping cell phone photos surrounding him.

McVey used Krispy Kreme donuts to try to coax him into a trap so that he could get him away from the crowds to inspect his injuries and eventually release him back into the wild, further away from civilization.

When police steered onlookers away and everyone waited for the bear to shimmy down the tree for his afternoon snack, the bear tricked everyone. He dropped down the backside of the tree, ran through a grassy field and into a breezeway of a church nearby.

While Brevard isn't quite used to seeing black bears on their sidewalks in downtown, other areas like Asheville and Black Mountain have more reports of bears near people.

To avoid luring bears to residential areas, McVey encourages people never to feed bears. He suggests keeping food and trash out of a bear's grasp, with tight trash lids and remembering not to leave pet food outside.

Copyright 2013 FOX Carolina (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

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