Sightings of the black bear in Shelton continued last night in Shelton in the vicinity of Bridgeport Avenue, Long Hill Cross Road and Old Stratford Road.
The first evening sighting on Thursday, April 30 was at about 6 p.m. on Long Hill Cross Road near Bridgeport Avenue, where the bear was observed in a field near a wooded area, said Shelton Police Det. Richard Bango.
Shelton police officers were able to watch the bear for an extended period, monitoring its actions and location. The bear “stayed in the wooded area,” Bango said.
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Click below to see a photo taken of the bear on Wesley Drive in Shelton on Thursday morning:
State Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) officers were contacted and responded to the scene.
“We wanted to make sure if didn’t come near any residential areas,” Bango said.
Near Outback steakhouse
Later, at slightly before 8 p.m., the bear was reportedly seen near Outback Steakhouse in the Center at Split Rock, a shopping center at Bridgeport Avenue and Old Stratford Road that includes a senior living facility.
A representative of Outback, at 698 Bridgeport Ave., said he believes the sighting report was made by a customer and that he’s not aware of any Outback employees who saw the bear.
“The police were all over the place looking for it,” the Outback representative said. “They didn’t find it.”
No sightings on Friday
There have been no sightings so far on Friday, according to the police as of about 3 p.m..
The last location puts the bear near Route 8 and not too far from the Stratford border. It’s an area with considerable retail and residential development, although there are large tracts of undeveloped land in the vicinity as well.
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How many bears are there in Connecticut? Click below:
Earlier on Thursday, April 30, the bear was observed on Wesley Drive (near Buddington Road and Huntington Street) in the early morning. Other reports later put the bear near Mill Street and Bridgeport Avenue at about 8 a.m., and then near Long Hill Cross Road and Bridgeport Avenue (this location includes fields and forested areas).
Keeping a bear away
The Shelton Police Department has offered the following advice for residents to minimize the possibility of attracting a bear to their property:
Residents should always take certain precautions in order to lessen the degree of black bear activity occurring within their neighborhoods, such as:
— washing or spraying trash containers with a disinfectant in order to eliminate food odors.
— removing bird feeders.
— if household pets are fed outdoors, removing the bowls and food soon after feeding.