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GARFIELD COUNTY -- A sixth black bear has been shot by a Utahn this summer after worries that the bear was coming too close for comfort.
Division of Wildlife Resources spokesman Mark Hadley tells KSL Newsradio the latest shooting happened early Wednesday morning on private property just north of the Bryce Canyon area in Garfield County.
"The bear appeared on a landowner's property and got into a garbage Dumpster. The landowner scared the bear away, but a short time later the bear appeared again and started ripping into grain sacks," Hadley said.
The grain was being kept in the back of the homeowner's truck to feed his farm animals.
"It should be a reminder to all of us about how important it is to keep our garbage and our food in places where bears can't get to it," Hadley said.
The homeowner told the DWR the bear visited his house Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. It was even appearing at his front door, which led him to eventually shoot the bear.
"The bear kept coming back basically to the same home, to the same area. The same landowner kept chasing the bear away, he chased the bear away multiple times," said Hadley.
The county attorney will determine if shooting the bear was justified.
Hadley says he isn't sure why so many people have decided to shoot the bears this year since there have not been more bear sightings reported this year than last year. He says last year no Utah residents shot bears over safety fears.
"Anytime someone sees a black bear we would encourage people to call us and let us know. We'll get a profession biologist or officer there as fast as we can to access the situation and take the appropriate action," Hadley said.
For information about bear safety, visit wildlife.utah.gov/bear/bear_safety.php.