We had another significant bear sighting at camp on Saturday, July 31!
Over a three-hour period on Saturday afternoon a young bear visited our camp multiple times. It was not aggressive, but it also was not afraid of people. The bear was first observed sniffing out the bunkhouse. It then went to the camping area and took a backpack. The backpack contained a half-consumed bottle of Gatorade, but no food. At one point it came halfway up the steps that go down to the outhouse before being turned around by a group of people yelling at it from the top of the stairs.
The bear, which has a yellow tag on its ear, is known to the park as one that is insufficiently afraid of people. They do not want to cull it, so want people visiting Thendara, or anywhere in the park, to act responsibly. If you see a bear the best thing to do is, stick together, do not run, make a lot of annoying noise, blow whistles, bang metal (pots or the gong if at camp), and WALK away or go inside.
Please do not encourage them to interact with people in any way. They live here, we are visitors in their home. I don’t want people to be scared but we need to be vigilant - absolutely no food, toiletries or food smelling backpacks in the campsites, bunkhouse or on the docks. No food can be left on the back porch or at the picnic tables, day or night. The refrigerator cabinet and the front porch door must be kept closed. Kitchen windows and the door must be shut if no one is in the kitchen.
The Park is tracking bear sightings. If you see a bear please fill out the attached form (as best you can) and send it to PALWildlife@parks.ny.gov along with pictures or other details. If the bear is seen at camp please copy a TMC Board Member so we can keep track of our sightings. Print out a copy for your backpack and we will keep a supply of the forms in the nature room. If a bear is causing a problem at camp or elsewhere in the park you can reach out to:
Hollie Campeanu, Wildlife Management Technicianby phone 845-206-8265 or email: Hollie.email@example.com. If on duty, Hollie can provide advice or may be able to come to the location of the problem. Please don’t call Hollie unless you are actively experiencing a bear problem.Please remember, the bear doesn’t want to hurt anyone, it just wants food. At this time of year there is very little native food in the park for bears, so they are visiting garbage bins and camping areas. We don't want them to ever find food at our camp, that will make them less likely to return.
And we want them to be afraid of people – that is the only way they are going to survive. Thanks and keep an eye out!