Video and Photos: Bear spotted on deck of Gaithersburg house - DC News FOX 5 DC WTTG

Video and Photos: Bear spotted on deck of Gaithersburg house

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GAITHERSBURG, Md -

A Maryland woman had her morning routine interrupted in a big way. A young black bear paid a visit to her home. She got quite a show. Kathy Garner was enjoying a quiet morning at home in Gaithersburg Thursday.

"I was having breakfast and reading the newspaper when I heard a loud crash on our deck," says Garner. She figured it was a raccoon, but it turned out to be a young black bear. It's estimated to weigh somewhere between 80 and 100 pounds. Kathy called 9-1-1.

"They said keep an eye on it, but don't go out. I said naturally I'm not gonna go out there with a bear," she laughs. But she watched from behind her sliding glass door.

As for that loud noise, it was the sound of the bird feeder and a piece of the railing crashing down. The bear ripped it off. Minor damage to the railing she and her husband had built just this past March. The feeder was full of sunflower seeds and the bear gobbled them up.

Kathy and her husband live right on the edge of Seneca Creek Park. They're guessing that is where the bear came from. Ken D'Loughy works for the Maryland Department of Natural Resources. He says the bear is probably about two years old and recently kicked out by momma. They're territorial so he's likely looking for a place to settle down.

"And this bear potentially may have traveled 80 to 100 miles," says D'Loughy. There had been other nearby sightings this week - including a bear scurrying down the street in the Kentlands. "It wasn't frightening. It was just exciting.

It was startling to see a bear. I wasn't expecting to see a bear," says Kathy.

Montgomery County Police say they got bear reports on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. On Tuesday a bear was spotted in the area of Middlebrook Road and Frederick Road. On Wednesday, the reports were in the area of Quince Orchard Road and Darnestown Road. And on Thursday the reports were in the area of Twelve Oaks Drive and Clopper Road.

Officials say black bear sightings in suburban areas are not uncommon during the summer.

Officials say if residents do encounter a bear they should not attempt to approach or feed it. Instead, they should give it space and scare it away by making a loud noise.

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