Merrimack Valley residents asked to take precautions after black bear sightings

·2 min read

Merrimack Valley residents are being asked to take steps to prevent black bear activity after sightings in Lowell and Tewksbury.

In a tweet Sunday, Lowell police say they received reports of a bear sighting on the area of Wentworth Avenue.

On Saturday, Animal Control in Billerica said it had received reports of a black bear in the Deering Drive area of Tewksbury.

Photos shared by residents showed what appeared to be a smaller black bear roaming around Tewksbury.

Tricia Foster was shocked to see the bear in her own backyard as she was approaching her gate.

“I just couldn’t believe my eyes. I was like, are you kidding me? And I was very excited, because I love them,” Foster said. “I looked over and I just stopped, and I couldn’t believe my eyes. There was a bear walking towards me.”

Tricia didn’t panic, instead she sent a signal to the animal that she wasn’t a threat.

“I slowly started to back away because I didn’t want to scare it. I wanted to make sure my wife Dawne got pictures of it. I just backed away,” Tricia said.

Dawne, using a zoom lens and keeping a respectable distance, took a series of remarkable photos of the bear.

“He was kind of wandering around, snooping, looking for something to eat,” Tricia remembers.

Residents should temporarily remove bird feeders and secure their trash and chicken coops until the bear moves to another area.

Animal Control says residents should go inside their homes and not approach the bear if they encounter it.

“Any type of wild animal doesn’t want anything to do with people, we have to live in the same environment, you just leave them be and they’ll leave you be,” said Billerica and Tewksbury Animal Control Officer Christine Gualtieri said.

For Tricia Foster, the pictures capture a moment, she’ll never forget..

“I love wildlife, any kind of wildlife I would prefer him to wander him back up north where he will find a mate, but it’s nice to see,” Foster said.

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