They have yet to venture into my back yard, but there seems to be a more than usual amount of bear sightings in Central New York. 

The family and I spent the weekend at Whetstone Gulf State Park and we didn't see bear number one.  We're usually pretty good about keeping food locked up as not to leave a personal invitation, but sometimes I think I would like to just leave a sandwich out, you know, just to kind of stir things up a bit.

According to, there were the Cortland bears that made an early appearance in the Spring, then last week, in Canton, they had to cancel kids' activities due to the number of bears in the area.

Tom Cunningham, a DEC wildlife technician, had this to say:

We've reached a point where all of (Upstate New York) is bear habitat. One of the big reasons that bears appear to be turning up in "weird" places this time of year is that the sows (mother bears) begin kicking out their cubs from last year and these young bears are out roaming trying to find and establish their own home ranges.

Realistically, black bears are actually more afraid of you, than you are of them.  Shouting and waving your hands or banging garbage can lids together, will usually do the trick, however, your neighbors will likely be not too happy with you, especially if you do this at 2 a.m.

If you can "bear" to read more, check out the link right HERE