Bear spotted in Rockingham

There have been 2 reports of a bear in Rockingham. It is that time of year when Mama Bear kicks them out of the den. Bird feeders are a big draw, so it is best to take them down for now.

Below is some information from the Maryland Department of Natural Resources (DNR), a phone number to call if you are having bear problems, as well as a link to the DNR website.

Black bears are large, strong, wild animals that should be treated with respect. When in bear country you should remain alert. DO NOT approach the bear and DO NOT feed a bear. Bears that associate food with people can become a threat to your safety.

AVOID a bear encounter. When hiking in bear country, stay alert and warn bears of your presence. Make noise (sing, clap, talk aloud, etc.), especially when you are in or near thick cover. Travel in a group when possible. All dogs should always be kept on a leash.

If you should encounter a bear that is not aware of your presence, back away and leave the area. Give the bear plenty of room. If you spot a bear cub, remain alert. The cub’s mother is sure to be near. Again, back away and leave the area.

Should you encounter a bear at close range, speak to the bear in a calm, assertive voice. STAY CALM and don’t run. Remain upright and back away from the bear. Avoid direct eye contact, as the bear may perceive this as a threat. Again, give the bear plenty of room. Don’t crowd the bear’s personal space.

Black bears may exhibit some unique behaviors when they feel their personal space is being threatened. A crowded bear may huff or make a woofing noise at the threat. They may slap swat the ground, pop their jaws, or even bluff charge the perceived threat. When a bear bluff charges, it may stop several yards or just a few feet short of the treat. Remember not to run. Stay calm, remain upright, and back away from the bear.

Bear may also stand upright on their hind legs. This is not a sign of aggression. Bears usually stand upright when they are trying to get a better look at something. Bears rely heavily on their sense of smell and may stand upright to better determine the source of a new scent.

It is important to remember that black bear attacks are extremely rare. By using common sense and good judgment, we can continue to appreciate the natural beauty of these forest animals at a safe distance.

Wildlife Service Offices – Western Maryland

Washington & Frederick Counties

Indian Springs Wildlife Management Area

14038 Blairs Valley Road

Clear Spring, MD 21722


Living with Black Bears


Living with Black Bears

An official website of the State of Maryland.