Residents of Merrimack Valley town urged to take precautions after several bear sightings

WESTFORD, Mass. — Residents of a Merrimack Valley town are being urged to take precautions amid a recent uptick in bear sightings.

Several bear sightings have been reported in the area of Nabnasset Pond in Westford, Westford Animal Control said Thursday in a Facebook post.

Westford Animal Control reminded residents to take the following safety precautions:

  • Secure trash: Ensure that all trash cans are secured and not overflowing. If possible, keep trash bins in garages and put barrels out the morning of pick up rather than the night before.
  • Avoid feeding wildlife: We kindly ask that you refrain from putting out birdseed or other food sources for animals. There is currently no shortage of food for wildlife, and feeding them brings animals closer to humans, which results in associating humans with food leading to unintended conflicts and the spread of diseases.
  • Pet safety: Be aware of your surroundings and keep dogs on a leash and cats indoors.
  • Do not seek out bears: If there is a bear in the area, do not go looking for it.
  • Maintain distance: If you see a bear, do not approach it. Maintain a safe distance and allow the bear to move away on its own.

Anyone who sees a bear is asked to report the sighting to Westford Public Safety Communications at 978-399-2345 or Westford Animal Control at 978-692-4574.

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