Lynchburg Police alert public to reports of bear sightings in the community

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LYNCHBURG, Va. (WDBJ7)-- The Lynchburg Police Department is reminding the public to be alert and take steps to avoid bear encounters following recent reported sightings in the Boonsboro area.

Warm weather and easy food access are believed by Lynchburg PD to be postponing hibernation for bears this winter - leaving them time to frequent the community.

A few tips they offer in order to not attract the animals to your property:

-Remove food attractants regularly, such as bird feeders, garbage and pet food
-Keep garbage in a garage, shed or bear-proof container until pick-up day
-Remove bird feeders and cat food from elevated decks, as black bears are very skilled at climbing.

The bear sightings have specifically been reported in the Bedford Hills neighborhood, but Lynchburg Police wants everyone to remain alert and informed. The public is invited to call Chief Animal Warden Ryan Ball (434-455-6105) for more information and visit https://www.dgif.virginia.gov/wildlife/bear/living-with-black-bears/ for additional tips.

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