Black Bear Sighting Reported in Downtown Barnegat

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BARNEGAT, NJ – It’s been a hot weekend at the Jersey Shore and probably hotter if you’re covered in a thick coat of black fur. Multiple black bear sightings have been reported from Howell Township to Little Egg Harbor.

On Sunday, a black bear made its way out of the Pine Barrens and into Barnegat Township. The bear, according to police was first spotted near Project Playground and then headed southeast into the Downtown Barnegat Area.

“I’m sure you’ve heard the news… While we all love living on the edge of the 1.1 million acre Pine Barrens, it comes with the occasional unannounced visit from neighbors who moved in before us,” the Barnegat Police Chief Keith Germain said Sunday afternoon. “Sightings of certain neighbors typically result in calls to the police when seen. Among these are coyotes and timber rattlesnakes. Today’s celebrity is one of the many American black bears that call our area home. This particular bear has made its way from Project Playground to the downtown area (who doesn’t love downtown on a beautiful Sunday) and is now making its way into the woods east of Route 9 towards Lower Shore Rd.”

Chief Germain urged caution to residents regarding the bear.

Here are some other bear sightings this week: