Updated: Tuesday, 16 Aug 2011, 10:36 AM MDT
Published : Tuesday, 16 Aug 2011, 8:01 AM MDT
LOS ALAMOS, N.M. - Los Alamos animal control officers are dealing with an increase of dangerous animals venturing a little too far into human habitats.
Sunday a 300 pound, male black bear wandered into a trap sitting right in front of the Newma's house. "I've got a bear and I'll tell you, it's been exciting," said Herbert Newman who has heard the bear wrestling around at night and believes he's been stealing his garbage. Bears aren't uncommon in Los Alamos, but ones so close to homes, the Newmans say it's uncomfortable. "All the other animals i'm not worried about," commented Newman. "I'm stronger than they are."
Game and Fish officers say they've also seen an increase of deer, coyotes and raccoons. "We've had a high consistency of animals coming into town," said Officer Blake Swanson, NM Game and Fish. "After the Las Conchas fire they were basically running rampant throughout town."
Swanson says besides the Las Conchas fire, the dire drought is also to blame for starving animals forced into neighborhoods. Before attending to the bear at the Newman's home, he set a trap for a raccoon that another neighbor says has been plucking fish out of his pond. The department has also trapped an unusually high number of raccoons. Swansons adds keeping garbage inside and taking down bird feeders at night will also help deter hungry creatures. He says the weather is helping too. "Every day we get a little more rain, a little more habitat back and that's helping quite a bit."
The trapped at the home was healthy and will be relocated near Cuba, N.M.