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Bear Encounters Are On the Rise, but Not For the Reason You Think

Bear Encounters Are On the Rise, but Not For the Reason You Think

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Marc Giauque, KSL NewsradioWildlife officials say there has been more than the normal number of bear encounters this year. But it may not be for reasons you think.

Near Smith and Moorehouse Reservoir, the Forest Service has closed one campground because of a young bear. Mammal Coordinator for the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources, Kevin Bunnell, says, "He's just in an area that we are not comfortable with it being in."

Unlike the event in American Fork, which he calls extremely rare, Bunnell says most sightings this year involve young bears, just cut away from their mothers. "That's the best explanation that I have for what, as to why people are seeing so many bears. The bear that was seen on top of Parley's Canyon early in the year is a prime example of that."

Bunnell says last year fewer cubs were lost, meaning there are simply more out there.

The Division of Wildlife Resources says it's tracking a bear right now on the Eastern Slope of the Unitas and another one in South east Utah.

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