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PARK CITY — Officials on Friday suspended their search for the black bear disturbing Park City as the bear is believed to be moving south.
The bear, originally seen in a northern subdivision of Jeremy Ranch, was most recently spotted Thursday night in Mellow Mountain, a neighborhood in Park City’s south end. Separate sightings were reported at 8:30 p.m., 9:30 p.m. and 10 p.m.
In each instance, the bear was gone by the time officers arrived, said Park City Police Capt. Phil Kirk.
No sightings were reported Friday, so the bear traps were removed, Kirk said.
“It’s not unusual to have bears in urban areas,” said Steve Gray, an urban wildlife biologist with the Division of Wildlife Resources. “As long as it’s on the move and it’s not causing problems, we’ll try to let it play out.”
Provided the bear continues to move south, it will soon leave Park City limits for Deer Valley and the mountains beyond, Gray said.
Despite directives from the city and the DWR that all trash bins be kept secure, the bear accessed several Mellow Mountain homeowners’ trash cans Thursday night. Kirk again reminded residents to take appropriate precautions.
“Bears tend to go wherever there’s food, so if he keeps thinking he can get food here, he may not leave,” Kirk said.
The DWR will continue to monitor the situation and respond appropriately, Gray said.
Allison Oligschlaeger is currently studying English and Arabic at the University of Utah while completing an internship with the Deseret News. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.