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Bear spotted in Henderson and Webster Counties

Published: Jul. 21, 2021 at 2:03 PM CDT
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HENDERSON CO., Ky. (WFIE) - There’s been a lot of talk about bear sightings this summer in southern Illinois and southern Indiana, and now reports are surfacing in western Kentucky.

The bear moved through the backwoods of Dixon, and Farmer Ben Turley got video when he went to check on his cows.

“We hadn’t been there for maybe 10 or 15 minutes,” Turley said. “We were talking with the wildlife, Kentucky Fish and Wildlife officer there, and all of a sudden we saw the bear across the road and we couldn’t believe our eyes.”

Turley’s livestock is his main concern, he didn’t want the bear anywhere near them.

“This is definitely something we’re not used to seeing in this part of the world,” he said.

Turley says his initial reaction was excitement to see the bear up close. A Kentucky Wildlife officer told him the bear was a young male, around 300 pounds, and probably just passing through.

“We wanted to run towards it and take some pictures of it,” he said.

The officer gave Turley some guidance on what to do if he sees the bear again, recommending that staying away is the right move.

“He said not to do anything unless you were in fear for your life, or in fear of your property as far as livestock or anything like that goes,” Turley said. “He said pretty much, don’t do anything.”

Just last week, DNR officials sent a warning to people to secure their trash bins after a sighting in Pike County, Indiana.

It’s not clear if it’s the same bear as the more recent sightings in Kentucky, but officials say black bears can travel about 20 miles a day.

Brad Conrad sent us photos of bear tracks in Henderson. It seems the bear also helped itself to some corn.

Bear tracks in Henderson
Bear tracks in Henderson(Brad Conrad)
Bear tracks in Henderson
Bear tracks in Henderson(Brad Conrad)
Bear tracks in Henderson
Bear tracks in Henderson(Brad Conrad)

Rickey Brown sent us several photos of a bear in his yard in Dixon.

Bear sighting in Dixon
Bear sighting in Dixon(Rickey Brown)
Bear sighting in Dixon
Bear sighting in Dixon(Rickey Brown)
Bear sighting in Dixon
Bear sighting in Dixon(Rickey Brown)

Melissa Waddell, also in Webster County, sent video of the the bear.

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