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Black bear sighted in village on Chenango Street

— A black bear has been seen multiple times in the village during the past week, on Chenango Street and near Lorenzo.

Cazenovia Police Chief Michael Hayes said the department received a call at 7:30 p.m. last Friday night, Aug. 23, where the bear was on Mill Street near the bridge for about 30 to 45 minutes. Three of his officers saw the bear run across Mill Street and followed it to the other side of Chenango Creek, where it then disappeared.

“Basically, it’s just looking for an easy meal,” Hayes said. “If you see it, report it; don’t follow it; don’t try to hunt it.”

The police have called the state Department of Environmental Conservation, which said it will not send anyone out unless people are attacked.

Chenango Street resident Deborah Emerson said the bear went between her house and her neighbors’ house, and they saw it in their yard.

“It’s pretty cool,” Emerson said. “I’ve lived here most of my life and have never seen anything like that before.”

Her neighbors, Joe and Michelle Milin, said the bear ran though their yard at about 7 p.m. last weekend. “We were sitting at our table with some friends, Mel and Bill Poglitsh, when Bill yelled, ‘Bear, there is a black bear in your yard!’ I turned around and saw the bear running thru our yard into our neighbor's yard. We watched it as it followed a fence two houses down and lost sight of it.”

The bear was also spotted in the corn fields around Lorenzo State Historic Site recently, confirmed Sharon Cooney, interpretive programs assistant. She said an animal control officer stopped by to inform them that the bear was sighted near the property.

Hayes said the bear is not rabid and has not threatened or attacked any people and it is apparently just looking for food. He urged village residents and businesses to put away their trash and to call the village police at 655-3276 if they see the bear.

Jason Emerson is editor of the Cazenovia Republican. He can be reached at editor@cazenoviarepublican.com.

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