Increased bear sightings on highways in the summer

BRUNSWICK, NC (WWAY) —After two drivers hit a 500-pound bear in Brunswick County on Sunday night, NC Wildlife is asking residents to be cautious and aware with the recent increase in bear sightings near the highways.

Last night, two cars on river road near Winnabow hit the bear. No one was hurt, but the quarter-ton bear died.

Wildlife says the increased bear sightings during the summer months is due to bear cubs being sent away by their mothers to explore and go off on their own. Bears will then attempt to cross the road, at a time when there are more drivers on the road during the summer tourist season.

“Anytime you’re on a highway, or a road, you can always come in contact with a deer or some other animal, but bears are so big, they’re dark, especially at nighttime, it’s tough to avoid those type of collisions, so you just have to be cognizant of watching your speed in general being careful of anything that can run out in front of you” said Clayton Ludwick, NC Wildlife Master Officer.

The NC Wildlife Resources Commission also reminds drivers, if you do hit a bear, do not take it or its remains home with you. They emphasized that it is illegal to possess them when it’s not an active bear hunting season.

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