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Bear and four cubs spotted on Government Hill

By Shannon Ballard Photojournalist: Nick Swann - 7:18 PM June 18, 2014
Anchorage –

Government Hill resident Stephanie Kesler says her new neighbors showed up Monday.

“Four cubs. You’ve got to really feel for the mom. She must just be at the end of her rope. Four rollie pollie playful cubs,” Kesler said.

They’ve been sitting on porches, climbing up trees and hanging out in the park. And while they are certainly cute, Kesler fears they’re dangerous.

“Kids, baby bears and mamma bears don’t mix,” she said.

So far the bears haven’t acted aggressive and the Alaska Department of Fish and Game hopes it stays that way so it doesn’t have to step in and put them down.

“Black bears do not have a history of defending food sources or cubs from humans. Usually we have to see something in particular in that bear’s behavior to take action,” said Fish and Game biologist Dave Battle.

Although it may seem like there’s been a lot of bears wandering Anchorage streets, Battle says that’s not the case.

Bear sightings in neighborhoods aren’t anymore common this year than past years.

But the word of caution remains the same. Lock up your trash and only admire from a distance.

On Wednesday there was no sign of the Government Hill bears.

Maybe they’ve moved on, but as long the forest running through Government Hill is home to urban wildlife, residents say they’ll do the best they can to be good neighbors.

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