Neighborhood Concerned About Bears

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CLEVELAND TOWNSHIP -- Marvin Johnson has lived on Happy Valley Road in Columbia County for more than 50 years. He's seen bears before, but recently he walked outside his home near Elysburg and saw damage to his property.

"In this case here, they were after some food that I had in my building and as you can see they ripped the door apart," Johnson said.

In addition to Johnson's barn door, the bears tore apart an apple tree. They also hit a neighboring property.

"My garbage this morning when I pulled in after work was scattered for 100 yards down the road," Matthew Wagner said.

Johnson is afraid since the bears seem to be getting more aggressive they're going to try to come into his house.

"If they smell something in my house, a door's not going to stop them," Johnson said.

According to the Pennsylvania Game Commission, an officer was at Johnson's home several times recently, including earlier this week. The game commission representative told Newswatch 16 bears often go after bird feeders, and Johnson has bird feeders and other sources of food on his land.

"Everything they told me basically added up to the fact that the whole problem is me living here," Johnson said.

The Wagner family next door was keeping bees. The game commission told them that hive was attracting bears. They gave it away earlier this year.

"We've got two young girls, two ankle-biting dogs, so kind of very nervous to go outside at dark," Wagner said.

As for Marvin Johnson, he's asked the game commission to trap the bears and move them someplace else, but the game commission told him no. Even so, he still has a bird feeder out and plans to keep on, as he says, living his life.


  • Klm

    we also are having problems with bears this year it is to a point where my daughter named him max he has been tearing our trtash apart throughout the neighborhood. we tried to call the game commision to get rid of this bear and they told us that they will not do anything and that it is our problem. they told us to put our trash inside our home so that the bear will not get and scatter it all over we tried vinagar and lime and nothing is getting rid of this bear problem and we have a set of twins that are turning two and we do not want them to get attacked by this bear what else can we do

    • ken

      Put lime and vinegar on the twins. If that doesn’t work, put the twins in foster care until the bears go into hibernation.

  • joe

    This man’s stubbornness will get these bears shot.
    As long as the feeders are out,they will continue to come back.
    In return he’s either going to shoot them or keeping crying to the Game Commission,forcing them to shoot them.
    When relocated,bears often return to the same area knowing food is available.
    The bears lose their fear of man when food is at stake & will attack if challenged for it.
    I consider a bears life more important than a birds.
    Birds can fend for themselves much easier than bears.
    Birds reproduce by the hundreds,bears only produce 3-4 cubs at a time & often 1-2 cubs do not survive more than a year.
    This man should be more considerate of the bears life more than a birds.
    Remove all temptation for the bears & they will leave.

  • Andy jackstone of campbell's ledge

    I care for all life, but today that is not popular.
    All people care about is what bath room they should use.

    • pat

      I use the transgender bathroom. If one isn’t available I use which ever bathroom matches my gender at the time of my transition.

  • Andy jackstone of campbell's ledge

    The black bear in PA. does not count.
    We see them walk the tracks like va ga bon ds in search of a new home.
    Man has taken their paradise and left them no choice.

    • Karma is a

      Amazing isn’t it…..its all the Bears fault.
      If you know the area, there is timbering all around and a shrinking food source.
      By all means, don’t stop filling the bird feeder for a couple weeks or move the “food” in your barn. Blame the Bear, trap it and relocate it! What a narrow minded little person.

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