Black bear captured after wandering through Paramus and Ridgewood

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Michelle Charlesworth reports on the capture of the black bear.

A wild black bear that was spotted wandering around neighborhoods in New Jersey for the past two days has been tranquilized and captured by animal control crews.

The 148-pound male bear, the same one that was seen Monday in Paramus, was climbing fences and exploring the backyards of homes in the Ridgewood area.

It climbed up into a tree, where it was tranquilized by DEP wildlife technicians. It jumped onto a garage roof, then ran up another tree and was tranquilized a second time, falling to the ground.

The bear was unharmed and will eventually be taken to a wildlife management area in Passaic County.

"Our goal is to give the bear as good as a chance as possible to get out of the situation," said a DEP spokesman. "We evaluated whether or not there was a good chance for this bear to get out on its own. The decision was made to tranquilize and get the bear to a safe area."

As the bear was in the tree, news helicopters swirled above and curious residents looked on from below.

"We're just going to make sure that the bear is safe and that the residents are safe," Ridgewood Mayor Susan Knudsen said. "I think that our school continues to be on lockdown, Ridgewood High School. They did release the children from the nursery school. But it's exciting. I think we have to wait for the state to come and tranquilize, and then we can move him out."

Police are urging everyone to use caution and say that if you see the bear, you should not approach it. Instead, call 911.

In a Facebook post, Paramus police said they expect to be seeing more bears.


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pets-animalsbearbear in treeParamusBergen CountyRidgewood
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