These bears were way too close to humans.
Wildlife officials will always recommend giving wild animals a wide berth. Especially when that animal is a large, mother black bear with cubs. Female bears are extremely protective of their young and will not hesitate to attack a human that gets too close. Which is why California and Nevada officials are rightfully concerned with a recent bear sighting in South Lake Tahoe.
The situation ended with zero people or bears hurt, but authorities are highlighting it anyway as an example of what not to do when you encounter a bear in the wild.
According to KCRA News, the mother bear did get into a beach-goers cooler before retreating into the forest. It is always a concern for officials when bears get into human food because it can help them lose their natural fears of people. The woman who shot the video, Jen Watkins, also told the station the mother bear encountered a golden retriever dog and was extremely protective of her cubs around it.
Since the video hit the Internet, authorities with both the Placer County Sheriff's Office and the California Department of Fish and Wildlife will be watching the area. Especially with the 4th of July holiday about to hit. Amazingly, this is not the first time this kind of bear beach encounter has happened in the area.
"They can be very dangerous," Lt. Nelson Resendes of the Placer County Sheriff's Office told the news station. "We are in their territory when we're up in the foothills and in the Sierra (Nevada). Don't feed them, don't entice them, don't provoke them and, obviously in a setting like this... don't approach them... respect their space."
In a situation like this, we here at Wide Open Spaces like to refer to the National Park Service's rules on wildlife. Keep at least 25 yards away from large herbivores like bison, elk, and moose, and at least 100 yards away from large predators like bears and wolves.
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