CLARK, NJ — Some Clark residents woke up to a visitor walking through their neighborhood this holiday weekend. According to Police Chief Pedro Matos, a black bear was sighted on Victoria Drive early Sunday.

Clark Police are monitoring the situation, and no additional wildlife personnel has been called in at this time, he said.

Matos is asking the public to stay away from the animal and to call the Clark Police to report any other sightings in the area. Clark Police Dispatch can be reached at 732-388-3434.

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It's not the first recent local sighting. Earlier this week, a young black bear was seen near Beechwood School in Mountainside. 

In June, a bear was spotted in Westfield and Cranford.

The state Division of Fish and Wildlife offers the following tips for the public on bears:

  • Never feed or approach a bear.
  • Remain calm if you encounter a bear. Do not run from it.
  • Make the bear aware of your presence by speaking in an assertive voice, singing, clapping your hands or making other noises.
  • Make sure the bear has an escape route.
  • If a bear enters your home, provide it with an escape route by propping all doors open.
  • Avoid direct eye contact, which may be perceived by a bear as a challenge. Never run from a bear. Instead, slowly back away.
  • To scare the bear away, make loud noises by yelling, banging pots and pans or using an airhorn. Make yourself look as big as possible by waving your arms. If you are with someone else, stand close together with your arms raised above your head.

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