Black bear reported near Discovery Park
Two people called 9-1-1 early this morning to say they thought they saw a black bear near Discovery Park in Magnolia.
Seattle Times staff reporters
Neighbors of Seattle's Discovery Park were startled Sunday to see a black bear wandering the area.
Seattle police received the first report of the bear after midnight Sunday, when a resident reported a bear wandering around their yard in the 5600 block of 39th Ave. West.
A second call came in around 6:45 a.m. from the 4200 block of 34th Avenue West. That caller said the animal was headed toward a ravine east of the park.
And the bear was still at-large as of Sunday night.
Brandon Ebel, who lives in the Lawton Wood neighborhood north of Discovery Park, said he thought he heard a raccoon after 10 p.m. Sunday, so he went outside to shoo it away.
Instead, he found "a big bear" going through his trash. Ebel said the bear also tried to get inside a car belonging to his in-laws.
Ebel called police and state wildlife agents, who responded to search for the animal.
Bear sightings are not unusual in May, according to the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, because that's when the animals emerge from their winter hibernation and go out in search of food.
"They have such an incredible sense of smell, they'll sniff up that bird seed in your backyard feeder or that tuna fish sandwich in your hiking pack from a long way off," according to a press release.
But they are not at all common in Seattle.
Ebel said he's lived near Discovery Park for several years and has never seen — nor expected to see — a bear roaming around.
Anyone who thinks they spotted the bear should call 9-1-1.
Maureen O'Hagan: 206-464-2562 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Jim Brunner: 206-515-5628 or email@example.com
Copyright © 2009 The Seattle Times Company
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