PARK CITY — On Tuesday, wildlife officials set traps to catch a bear roaming around Jeremy Ranch. If it’s caught, they plan to release it back into the wild.
The Utah Division of Wildlife Resources said several residents reported seeing a bear on Saddleback Road. Early Monday morning, a Summit County Sheriff’s deputy got video of the bear in front of a house.
Wildlife officials say there was another sighting Tuesday morning in the Pinebrook area.
“It’s not an uncommon thing for us to have these kinds of sightings or even encounters,” said Phil Douglass, Utah Division of Wildlife Resources Wildlife Conservation Outreach Manager for Northern Utah.
He said the bear in the video seems to be young.
“It appears to be about a year-and-half-old bear, so it's a fairly young bear that’s looking for its place in the world,” Douglass said.
Douglass said bears tend to wander so there could be more than one.
“They can travel great distances in a day. They’re fast movers,” he said.
Melinda Breiholz, who lives on Saddleback Road, said she got a recorded message about the bear early Monday morning.
My heart pounded out of my chest. I was really concerned about a bear because we haven't had a bear spotted here before.
–Melinda Breiholz, local resident
“My heart pounded out of my chest,” Breiholz said. “I was really concerned about a bear because we haven’t had a bear spotted here before.”
Wildlife officials urged residents to keep their garbage and pet food in their garages and dumpsters sealed.
“We don’t want them to have any reason to stay around,” Douglass said.
And if you encounter a bear, don’t run, he said.
“Make yourself look larger and slowly back away,” Douglass said.
He said bear safety is important, especially heading into the summer months.
“People are going out camping, obviously keeping a clean campsite; keeping food in bear-proof containers; just common sense stuff,” he said.
For more information on bear safety, visit www.wildawareutah.org.