Bell Acres bears latest in string of regional sightings

Thursday, June 27, 2019 | 12:01 AM

Bell Acres residents should be on the lookout for an unwanted visitor.

Police have issued two warnings this week about black bear sightings in the borough.

On June 26, police posted on Facebook about a black bear in the area of Witherow Road. The animal stopped for a snack at a backyard bird feeder, police said. They encouraged residents to remove food sources and secure trash at their properties.

The following day, police got another call about a bear wandering in the 1700 block of Big Sewickley Creek Road.

It is unclear if the two incidents are the same bear, but they are the latest in a string of sightings this summer.

On June 14, a black bear was spotted near South Park and Drake roads in Bethel Park. Police there warned residents to stay away from the animal and not try to capture pictures. The South Hills Cooperative Animal Control and the state Game Commission were alerted.

That same week, a black bear was reported in Upper St. Clair near Boyce Mayview Park and in South Fayette, eating bird seed in the Hunting Ridge CSA and Fairview neighborhoods.

Another young black bear was spotted in Penn Hills along Frankstown Road. Social media reports and Game Commission officials said it was likely the same one spotted later that evening in Turtle Creek and Monroeville.

Game Warden Dan Puhala said, “Give the bear space. It’s going to move on.”

Anyone who sees a bear in their yard should stay inside and call animal control.