A black bear that wandered through a suburban Los Angeles neighborhood, temporarily blocking traffic on a freeway and then startling residents as she roamed through yards and a local school has been taken back to the woods where she belongs, and where game officials hope she will remain.
Around 7:30 a.m. Sunday, the 200-pound bear walked out onto 210 Freeway through Montrose in Los Angeles, causing the highway to be shut down until the animal lumbered up a roadside embankment and into a nearby residential neighborhood.
Residents first spotted the bear climbing over fences and wandering through yards, according to ABC station KABC-TV in Los Angeles.
Officials said the bear made a quick trip to a nail salon, and also took a brisk jog at the Crescenta Valley High School running track during her 2.5-mile adventure through the suburbs.
Authorities were eventually able to surround the black bear after tracking her by land and air, and hit her with tranquilizer darts at Sunset and Hermosa avenues.
“The bear was successfully captured and returned to the Angeles National forest yesterday afternoon without incident,” Department of Fish and Game information officer Janice Mackey told ABC News. “It has been tagged (#520) per policy and walked off on its own at about 3:30 p.m.”
“Hopefully she’ll find some food and stay put,” Mackey added.
The incident is just the latest in a unusually high number of cases across the country of bears roaming through residential areas, and wildlife officials and experts have said they expect the fall to bring even more, as drought and wildfires have made it more difficult for bears to find food in their natural habitat.