A black bear and her cubs are hibernating in Pennsylvania's Poconos. Watch the livestream
A Pennsylvania Game Commission webcam lets you sneak a peek at a hibernating black bear and her cubs.
The livestream shows the family residing from underneath a Pike County deck in the Pocono Mountains in northeastern Pennsylvania.
It’s the third time the Pennsylvania Game Commission, in conjunction with HDOnTap, has offered a live bear cam during hibernation season. Streams were also broadcast in 2019 and 2021.
The Game Commission reminds people not to approach hibernating bears, and not to seek out this den.
“Please respect the privacy of the bears and the landowners, to whom we are extremely grateful for their enthusiastic cooperation in allowing us to share this peek into the lives of black bears,” the commission said.
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Poconos bear cam: Watch a momma bear and its cubs
The bears should be around for a few months. In 2019, the broadcast of a mother and one cub showed them leaving the den on April 11. A sow and three cubs left on March 24, 2021.
“The sow will leave with the cubs when they are about three months old (typically by early April in this region). There might be activity just outside the den for a while, but once the sow decides to go, she typically doesn't come back. She'll take the cubs to a wooded area and create a daybed, around which she'll teach them to climb trees and find food,” the Game Commission said.
What should you do in a black bear encounter?
Bear attacks are rare, the Game Commission says, but still — you shouldn’t hang around if you see one.
“In most cases, a bear will detect you first and leave the area long before you'll ever see it,” according to the Game Commission.
If not, you should make noise so that the bear becomes aware of you and can leave.
“If you have a close encounter, back away slowly while facing the bear so you always know where the bear is and how it’s reacting,” the Game Commission said. “Wild bears rarely attack people. Slowly backing away diffuses the situation and gives the bear room to flee.”
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Stay calm, and don’t run or climb a tree.
Although a bear will typically leave humans alone, if one does approach, the Game Commission instructs you to “face the bear, wave your arms wildly and shout while continuing to back away. The idea is to intimidate the bear into retreating. Swing a stick, your backpack or whatever is handy if the bear gets close.”
Fighting the bear would be a last resort, but the Game Commission said that “Bears have been driven away when people have fought back with rocks, sticks, binoculars and even their bare hands.”
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This article originally appeared on Pocono Record: Bears in hibernation: Pennsylvania webcam shows black bear and cubs