Officials confirm bear picture taken in Ohio Co. is real - wave3.com-Louisville News, Weather & Sports

Officials confirm bear picture taken in Ohio Co. is real

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We've all heard of the bear sightings in Western Kentucky.

Now, wildlife officials believe a photo taken from a family near Cromwell in Ohio County is for real and it may be the young black bear they've been looking for.

Cindy and Ross Stewart set up a camera on their property to capture wildlife. When their camera stopped working last Tuesday they checked the pictures and were shocked to see a black bear. The bear was checking out their deer feeder last Monday morning.

A Kentucky Fish and Wildlife official went to their property this afternoon and confirmed the pictures are real. 

"It's a very young male. I would speculate from the photos he appears to be anywhere from 100-150 pounds...pretty small guy," said Scott Harp a Wildlife Biologist with the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources.

Wildlife officials say they received reports of a bear sighting near the Mammoth Cave area a month ago and last Friday five people in Daviess County said they saw a bear near Masonville. Wildlife officials suspect it's the same black bear.

"We definitely saw a pattern. it's extremely unusual for a bear to be here. We definitely saw a pattern and wanted to investigate and we came across some good trail camera photos," said Harp.

Wildlife officials say they suspect the bear was forced out of its territory in Eastern Kentucky or Tennessee by another black bear and is wandering around trying to find a female bear.

"I would never expected to see this black bear in this part of the state. To see it keep wandering westward is extremely usual," said Harp.

Wildlife officials say black bears are not aggressive by nature and a young male like this bear is very afraid of people.

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