Black bear sightings concern residents in St. Mary Parish

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FRANKLIN, La. (KLFY)- Residents in St. Mary Parish are concerned about black bear sightings.

One resident even captured bear activity on camera.

“This is the tracks of a female or male but this is the track,” David McCoy Jr., a Franklin resident who has seen black bears in his neighborhood, said.

“This is what you’re dealing with how big it is so it’s not a little cub that’s doing this.”

McCoy lives off of St. Joseph Lane in Franklin. He said black bears have been his most recent concern in his neighborhood.

“This is what our concern is,” McCoy explained. “We don’t want to down any officials, but we want them to understand that life is at jeopardy here. You saying we got to wait to do anything to harm them, but you cannot wait until something that size busts into the door.”


Tawanna Lynn, another Franklin resident who has seen black bears, added, “As soon as it gets dark, they’re roaming around and they’ll pull our trash as you can see from over there. They pull the trash from over there and they just do that. They don’t care. They own the place and we’re hostages in our own home. At night, we have no nightlife.”

Lynn also lives on St. Joseph Lane. She’s lived there for about five years, but has never had a bear problem, until recently when she caught a black bear on her security camera outside her house.


“I couldn’t believe it,” explained Lynn. “My daughter said the bear knocked over the trash can. I said girl you’re tripping and I went and looked at it and sure enough it was the bear that knocked it over and from then on we look at the cameras when we’re leaving out to make sure if somebody’s coming in we look at the cameras to make sure it’s clear.”

Here are resources from the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries:

  • LDWF’s site states that there has never been a recorded case of bears attacking humans in Louisiana. 
  • If confronted with a bear, you are encouraged to “display dominance” to scare the bear away. This includes standing tall and raising your arms. 
  • Also, shouting and loud talking is advised.
  • Make sure you keep food smells to a minimum in your outdoor trash can by rinsing containers before throwing them away.

You can also visit bearwise.org for more tips on keeping bears away.

News 10 spoke to a black bear conflict officer with St. Mary Parish who says Pelican Waste and Debris will distribute bear-proof garbage cans to residents on St. Joseph Lane in Franklin.

News 10 will have a follow-up story on this new service.

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