The Bears Are Roaming

Black Bears
Stock Photo: May 10th, 2014 - Fifth Line

Spring has arrived and the Sault Ste. Marie Police Service has started to receive calls for service regarding black bears that have wandered into residential areas.

Residents are reminded to keep garbage secure and inaccessible to animals.  The Sault Ste. Marie Police Service works closely with The Ministry of Natural Resources to monitor the incidents of sightings and coordinate a response.  Members of the public are urged to contact the Police and The Ministry of Natural Resources Bear Wise Hotline to report encounters.

In an emergency situation where a bear poses an immediate threat to public safety, people are encouraged to call 911 immediately.  These situations may include a bear that is;

Entering a school yard when school is in session,
Stalking people and lingering at a site,
Entering or trying to enter a residence,
Wandering into a public gathering, and;
Killing livestock/pets and lingering at the site.

For all non-emergency encounters citizens are encouraged to call the toll-free Bear Wise hotline at 1-866-514-2327 (TTY 705-945-7641).  These situations may include a bear that is;

Roaming around, checking garbage cans,
Breaking into a shed where garbage or food is stored,
In a tree,
Pulling down a bird feeder or knocking over a barbecue, and;
Moving through a backyard or field but is not lingering.

Trained staff with The Ministry of Natural Resources can provide advice about black bear behaviour, how to avoid human-bear conflicts, and how to remove attractants from your property to reduce your chances of an encounter.

The Bear Wise program provides advice to municipalities, the public, and other stakeholders about what they can do to keep black bears away from urban and semi-urban areas and how to manage problem bears.  Visit for tips on how to reduce the chances of an encounter and to learn more about bears.

Remember, it only takes one property where attractants are not managed carefully to draw bears into a neighbourhood.  Everyone must work together to help keep attractants to a minimum and reduce the likelihood of an encounter.


  1. Please stop with your exaggerated tales! Black bears are peaceful, shy animals! Hunters have injured and killed more people! Maybe read about different species of bears and their behaviors! Plesse stop spewing innacurate and fallacious untruths! Its quite maddening

    • Please know what you are talking about before you start sharing fallacious information. They are not dangerous they are shy, timid animals! Respect their space as you would any wild animal

    • no reason to stop hiking because of bears. You can bring a whistle or bear spray. A bear will run the other way to avoid contact with people. Be aware, as you would with any wild animal, that if you stumble upon mama with her cubs, back up slowly and get out of her way. It is NOT their nature to attack. Please educate yourself before sharing misinformation or exaggerations!

  2. Black bears are almost a zero threat to humans honestly. I’ve been within 10 feet of a black bear before and it ended up running away from me before I knew what was going on. Brown bears and grizzlies you should worry about but black bears no.

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