DEP OFFERS TIPS ON REDUCING CONFLICTS WITH BEARS
Black bears have exited their winter dens throughout New Jersey and are entering their most active period of the year as they search for food and mates, making encounters with humans in populated areas more likely. To reduce the risk of such encounters, State residents-especially those living in "bear country'' in Northwest Jersey-- are urged to take some simple precautions.
* A black bear passing through a residential area should not be considered a problem, as long as it is behaving normally and not posing a threat.
* If you encounter a bear remain calm and do not run. Make sure the bear has an escape route. Avoid direct eye contact, back up slowly and speak with a low, assertive voice.
* Black bear attacks are extremely rare. Should a black bear attack, fight back. Do not play dead.