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June 15, 2019 | 8:12pm
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Bear suspect in 6 sightings in the Ferndale area

overturned chicken coop from bear raid 2016-05-09 Debora Keyes
Photo courtesy Debora Keyes

Ferndale neighbors in the west and north areas should be aware a bear is the primary suspect in some recent chicken coop ransackings and egg robberies.

According to Washington Department of Fish & Wildlife (WDFW) Game Warden Dave Jones, bears usually stay in one place but this one is milling around a wide area. A half-dozen sightings have occurred since Sunday in various locations including Stein Road, Bay Road, N Star Road, Mountain View Road and near I-5 by milepost 263 (Portal Way).

In one case, neighbor Debora Keyes woke up yesterday to find her chicken coop pushed over and ripped open during an overnight raid resulting in the loss of two of her hens (see picture).

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Based on sightings and evidence left behind, Jones estimates this bear is a typical juvenile weighing between 125 and 150 pounds. He initially suspected a large cat, like a cougar. But now, he is certain to be dealing with a bear.

bear sighted by thornton and elder by Shaaron Coleman 2016-05-10
Bear sighted May 10th near Thornton & Elder Roads. Photo courtesy Shaaron Coleman.

Jones has set three traps equipped with the aromatic bait of cooked bacon, maple syrup and sardines.

Anyone else who sees the bear or comes upon damage likely caused by a bear should immediately contact WDFW’s regional office at (425) 775-1311 and leave a message if after hours.

The WDFW has posted information about living in areas with bears with some “dos and don’ts.”

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