YORKTOWN HEIGHTS, N.Y. -- While the possible Yorktown bear remains elusive, officials are advising safety first for residents.
On Friday, Yorktown police reported signs of a bear on the loose in the Croton Heights area of Yorktown near routes 118 and 129 . Despite not seeing the bear, officials saw footprints in the snow and bird feeders appear to have been tampered with.
On Monday, Lt. Tom Gentner of the Yorktown Police said residents are advised to simply leave the bear alone and not call police unless the bear is being aggressive.
Councilman Tom Diana said in a rural area like Yorktown, seeing wild animals is always a possibility.
"I remember a couple of years ago there was a moose on Wood Street," Diana said. "How he got here is beyond us but eventually he wasn't seen anymore and found his way back home."
Wild animals are part of Yorktown's rural charm, Diana said.
"We're not used to having bears down here, but it does happen," Diana said. "They've had a tough winter, too."
Diana said he sees often sees foxes and coyotes in Yorktown.
"They want to keep our distance from us and we want to keep our distance from them," Diana said. "Safety is the number one priority."
Yorktown police advised residents with several safety tips including removing bird feeders, not leaving garbage outside, and not leaving small children or pets unattended.
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