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Black Bear Runs Into Tree in Downtown Danville - abc27 WHTM

Black Bear Runs Into Tree in Downtown Danville

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Danville, VA - A black bear spent the entire day Thursday as the center of attention in Danville. A police officer spotted the bear downtown, around 4:30 Thursday morning, Police and the Department of Game and Inland Fisheries caught him Thursday afternoon.

We were on a wild bear chase throughout downtown. The bear ended up in a tree on Spring Street. ABC 13 was able to catch the entire chase on camera.

Searching for a 150 pound black bear throughout Danville took us on a game of "hide and seek". The bear, said to be about three years old, ran around downtown and then up a tree. But he wasn't alone. Crowds formed quickly, turning Spring Street into a zoo exhibit.

"We went over into the parking lot and watched him climb up the wall," said onlooker Bobby White.

"It was crazy. It was something new to see but also dangerous at the same time," said onlooker Justin King.

Wildlife Biologist Dan Love lace says bears will wonder into cities on occasion especially this time of year. He expects this bear followed the river and wound up here. Love lace says he probably posed no real threat to people. But police pushed back onlookers and taped off a parameter, just to be sure.  Then Love lace worked to get him down safely.

 "I wanted to make sure I had a good safe clean shot with the dart so we got to where we had the best position," said Love lace.
    
Love lace tranquilized the bear then they waited for the drug to take effect.
 
"It fell a little ways then we were able to lower it down into the tarp," said Love lace.
    
From tarp to truck, Love lace and the bear were then headed back into the woods, a more appropriate environment.

The whole thing took about two hours. Love lace assures us the bear was not hurt during this whole operation.
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