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Bear spends afternoon on Dartmouth campus, food draws them says expert

New Hampshire Union Leader

July 16. 2018 6:24PM
In a photo on Dartmouth's Daily Blog, a bear bolts for the woods near Wheeler Hall on the Hanover college campus Saturday around 7 p.m. (COURTESY)

HANOVER — A young bear made its way to the Dartmouth College campus and spent an afternoon in a tree on Saturday before bolting for the woods, wildlife officials said.

Andrew Timmins, bear biologist for the New Hampshire Fish and Game Department, said Sunday it is unlikely the bear was the offspring of “Mink,” the mother bear who escaped a death order after several bear-human encounters in town.

A reprieve from Gov. Chris Sununu spared Mink and several yearlings, but she avoided capture until she was spotted again this spring with a fresh litter of cubs. The sow bear was eventually caught and relocated to a spot in northern Coos County on June 29.

“We did say when that bear was removed, it was going to open territory for new bears to come in,” Timmins said of Hanover. “It wasn’t by chance that dominant sow lived there for 10-plus years. It was because there was a lot of food there and it was a good place to live.”

Timmins is monitoring Mink’s whereabouts through a tracking collar. After heading north and nearly reaching the Canadian border, Timmins said Mink has basically completed a circle back to near the spot where she was released.

“As far as what she does next, it’s impossible to say,” Timmins said. “She’s not showing any signs of (returning to Hanover) now so maybe she’ll settle in the northern part of the state, which would be wonderful.”

University Animals Hanover

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