Police: Bear sightings reported in northern section of Westport

Photo of Tara O'Neill
A file photo of a bear visiting a Wilton, Conn., backyard, taken in May 2019. Police in Westport, Conn., said there were recent sightings in the northern section of town on May 31, 2021.

A file photo of a bear visiting a Wilton, Conn., backyard, taken in May 2019. Police in Westport, Conn., said there were recent sightings in the northern section of town on May 31, 2021.

Karen Reid / Contributed

WESTPORT — There were multiple bear sightings Sunday in the northern section of town, according to police officials.

Lt. David Wolf said the bear was first sighted in the area of Weathervane Hill before it was seen by Earthplace, off Woodside Lane.

Later in the day, Wolf said, the bear was seen at the Westport/Weston YMCA, and on Weston Road in the early evening.

Westport Animal Control officers believe it was the same bear in all four spots, Wolf said, adding that the bear was not behaving aggressively.

Wolf also reminds residents that bears are timid animals that try to avoid human contact. Food attractants, like bird feeders, garbage or pet food, can lure in hungry bears.

Grilling can also attract bears — which was the case for one homeowner in Trumbull last month— so Wolf urged residents to clean barbecues after each use. He said residents should keep an eye on pets and children outside.

Wolf said residents should not approach the bear if they see it, and said that it’s presence in town does not mean it needs to be removed. If left alone and given access to an escape route, the bear will usually wander back to more secluded areas, according to the state Department of Energy and Environmental Protection.

Sightings can be reported to Westport Animal Control at 203-341-5076. Bear sightings can also be reported to DEEP online.

For more information, visit the DEEP website on how to co-exist with bears.

Correction: This article has been updated to reflect that the bear sightings were reported on Sunday, not Monday.