Bear Update: No further sightings, maybe from Lummi Island

There have been no more sightings of the black bear on Orcas Island since the original one on Saturday, May 27, 2017. At that time it was seen in the 1100 block of Point Lawrence Road heading towards Obstruction Pass.

San Juan County Sheriff's Office contacted the state Fish and Wildlife Dept. Staff there said bears can swim surprisingly long distances. 

One reader commented on March 27: "A black bear has been tracked roaming around Lummi Island for the last week. Rummaging through garbage cans as of yesterday. We suspect it swam over from Lummi Nation during their last fireworks barrage all night. Fish and Wildlife came over this morning with a trap, to relocate the poor critter, so we'll see.

Another reader wrote: There is no reason to trap this bear. Bears were native on Orcas when Europeans arrived. If our recent ancestors had not killed them all or "extirpated" them as the sign in Moran State Park euphemizes, we would still have bears on Orcas. Leave the bear alone. It is a native species. Let it live here unmolested. Many communities including island live with bears. It's easy - just keep your trash out of the way and let them eat ants and berries. They'll be fine.

The Sheriff's Dispatch Office reminds people to keep their garbage secured and emphasizes that shooting the bear (unless it is attacking) is felony poaching.

For more information about black bears visit BBC Amazing Wildlife

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