PHOTOS: Bears in the Heartland

Multiple bears spotted in the Heartland
Published: Jun. 21, 2022 at 1:38 PM CDT
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(KFVS) - Some black bears have been spotted in the Heartland.

Viewer Nate Miller sent us a trail camera photo of a bear that was on his property in Burfordville, Mo.

Dylon Wyatt shared photos and a video of a bear he said he spotted while driving through Patton, Mo.

He said this was on Highway 72 near Bollinger Farms.

Dylon Wyatt says he was driving through Patton, Mo. when he saw this black bear.

Earlier in June, the Missouri Department of Conservation reminded everyone to “Be Bear Aware” this summer.

According to a release from MDC, now is the prime time for seeing young male black bears on the move.

You can send us your bear photos or videos below.

MDC offered some tips to avoid issues if a bear has been sighted in the area:

  • Store garbage, recyclables, and compost inside a secure building or in a bear-proof container or location
  • Regularly clean and disinfect trash containers to minimize smells that could attract bears
  • Keep grills and smokers clean and store them inside
  • Don’t leave pet food outside. Feed pets a portion at each meal and remove the empty containers
  • Refrain from using bird feeders in bear country from April through November. If in use, hang them at least 10 feet high and 4 feet away from any structure. Keep in mind that even if a bear cannot get to the birdseed, the scent could still attract it to the area
  • Use electric fencing to keep bears away from beehives, chicken coops, vegetable gardens, orchards, and other potential food sources]

According to the department, its ongoing bear research indicates Missouri is currently home to around 800 black bears, and that population is growing by 8 percent each year.

MDC Southeast Regional Administrator Matt Bowyer said only one species can be found in the state, the American black bear, though multiple color phases can be found in Missouri other than black, including brown, red or cinnamon.

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