Black bears roam neighborhood in St. Mary Parish

Video by: Tawanna Lynn
Video surveillance footage of a black bear on her property

Kyasia Hunt
@KyasiaHunt

Residents of St. Mary Parish are afraid because black bears are roaming their neighborhood at night, which causes a concern for their safety.

Tawanna Lynn, who lives on St. Joseph Lane, is afraid to leave her house at night because of the bears. She said the sightings of the bears have been going on for three weeks.

“As soon as it gets dark they are roaming around like they own the place,” Lynn said. “At night we have no night life, we are hostages in our own home.”

Lynn said she did not believe her daughter when told a black bear knocked over their trashcan. She was shocked when she re-watched her surveillance camera.

“If somebody is coming to our house, we have to look at the camera to make sure the path is clear,” Lynn said. “It’s not fair to us and no one wants to do anything about it.”

She said she would never want to leave her hometown but this incident would make her move away.

David McCoy, another resident of St. Joseph Lane, is concerned for the safety of his family. He said he wants officials to be more concerned with getting these bears off the streets.

“Right now we are all afraid because we are limited of where we can go at night,” McCoy said. “We just want to live a peaceful life.”

McCoy said residents in their neighborhood are nervous about getting out of their cars at night because they don’t know what will happen.

McCoy has seen bear tracks near his house and fears that a family of black bears is nearby.

According to the Louisiana Department of Wildlife & Fisheries website, Nuisance Wildlife Control Operators are not permitted to handle bears. Instead they list precautions that people can take to get rid of them. Some precautions include live trapping the animal and releasing it, making sure no pet food is left out at night and securing trash can lids and compost heaps.
   

Interview with David McCoy
By: Kyasia Hunt

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