Black Bear spotted in Englewood

August 2, 2010 3:49:15 PM PDT
Cornered in an Englewood backyard, a black bear was not waiting around long before he was on the move again.

The bear was so exhausted from being chased around by the police Sunday, it stopped at the Knickerbocker Country Club golf course for a 2-hour nap on the fourth hole.

The 150-pound black bear bounded across Hudson Avenue in Englewood on Sunday.

It wasn't long before the hungry yearling was picking through someone's garbage, right in the shadow of a police cruiser.

Laura Wittreich's husband took this photo of the bear lumbering through their neighbor's front yard on Hillside Avenue in Bergenfield.

"With two small kids, any parent would be concerned, keep them close, keep them in the backyard with a fence," Wittreich said.

Officials are asking residents in Englewood, Bergenfield and Tenafly to keep their garbage secured and their dog food inside.

"If you exercise common sense and call us as soon as you see them you'll be fine," said Chief Arthur O'Keefe of the Englewood Police Department.

The wily bear hasn't been spotted yet Monday but Sunday, it kept wildlife officials on the run.

He managed to sneak past one police officer with her gun drawn and made his way through countless backyards, where residents like Joe Kurz were able to record his every move.

"It looked like he was more hungry than anything else," Kurz said.

Golfers at Knickerbocker Country Club in Tenafly skipped the fourth hole after members were warned the bear was sleeping in the woods near the tee.

"It raised their eyebrows, they were shocked just to hear it," said Chris Elleo of the Knickerbocker Country Club.

Wildlife officials tracked the bear with tranquilizer guns but were unable to locate him.

Meanwhile, homeowners are reflecting on their unusual visitor.

"Definitely not Bergenfield, we are the bears of Bergenfield, but we never had any real ones until now," said Audrey Howard, a Bergenfield Resident.

The yearling is far from home.

Bear experts say bears around a year old are trying to establish their own territory, and this guy just went a little further east than most.

Searches will only resume if there are additional bear sightings.