Wisconsin Bears Expanding Their Range

ALGOMA, Wis., May 28 (UPI) — Black bears are expanding their range in central and southwestern Wisconsin, leading to more sightings in suburban and urban areas, officials said.

Wisconsin has between 22,000 and 40,000 black bears, with many on the move in late spring and early summer, Becky Roth, a Department of Natural Resources biologist told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel in a story published Friday.

“Most bear sightings we receive in southern counties occur during late May and June when sub-adult bears, mostly young males, are forced out of breeding territories up north and disperse long distances in search of new habitat.”

Last year a tagged bear, believed to be a young male, traveled 259 miles through Iowa, Illinois and Wisconsin, the Journal Sentinel reported.

Wildlife officials had this advice: If a bear comes into your yard, stay inside until it leaves. If you’re outside, wave your arms and make noise and slowly back away and give the bear an escape route.

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