Living in the Hudson Valley we are used to animal sightings. Some aren't as common as others, so it's nice to get a little refresher course on how to avoid contact with bigger animals.

The East Fishkill Police Department is reporting that they have received "numerous reports" of a black bear in the hamlet of Hopewell Junction and East Fishkill area. There have been bear sighting reports here in the past but just as a reminder, there are several ways to avoid human-bear interactions.

The Department of Environmental Conservation and East Fishkill Police share that "Conflicts with bears are often associated with activities not intended to attract bears like feeding birds, improperly stored garbage and leaving messy grills and pet food outdoors."

Obviously, bears are attracted to food so you're going to want to clean up your backyard and deck area after enjoying an outdoor dinner, which is pretty simple.

If you need more information on how to reduce human/bear conflict the DEC has a page on their website with guidelines to follow whether you're at home or camping.

For East Fishkill residents if you see a bear in your area you are urged to leave it be and call the police department at 845-221-2111.

Most bears will walk off on their own, however, if for some reason a bear is causing an "imminent threat to human life" the East Fishkill PD and NYS DEC will "take necessary and appropriate action."

Have you seen any bears so far this spring in the Hudson Valley?

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