Black bear in north sound has neighbors on edge

by: Lee Stoll Updated:

Black bear has neighbors on edge

BLAINE, Wash. - A black bear has people keeping a nervous eye on pets and small children. It's shown up twice this week in the densely developed Birch Bay Community near Blaine.

 Jack Venett first saw the bear last weekend crouched next to a tree in his backyard. Monday night, it was back to snack on bird seed.

"This is a steel rod and you can see he pulled it right over and tore the bird feeders apart," said Venett as he walked a KIRO News crew through along the trees that line his property.

"We shined the flashlight on him and he was just laying here eating all the bird seed," said Venett.

 Next door, Mike Berry is keeping his pug Ozzie on a very short leash. Neighbors are used to seeing eagles, squirrels and coyotes, but bears and big cats are showing up.

"The neighbor was mowing his lawn around 4 p.m., said he saw a cougar. Isn't that strange?" said Berry.

 The animals are probably coming out of the woods near the community. Developers have clear-cut about 400 acres for new construction.

 Venett called the sheriff's office and Fish and Wildlife. Officers showed up with flashlights and rubber bullets but the bear was gone.

"Hopefully, he's just coming out of hibernation. He'll get his fill and move on," said Venett.