Mid-morning on Wednesday, July 12, the Mahaska County Sheriff’s Office had received a report of a black bear walking in a soybean field north of Oskaloosa. The partying reporting the sighting spotted the bear at the intersection of Highway-163 and 235th Street.
The Iowa Department of Natural Resources was contacted regarding the sighting. Law Enforcement was unable to location the animal, however, they did obtain hair they believe is from a black bear and sent it off to the DNR lab for testing.
Over the past several weeks, the Iowa DNR noted there has been multiple reports of bear sightings in Iowa over the past several weeks; closest being in Tama and Iowa Counties. The DNR believes this bear is no danger to the public and will vacate the state eventually.
The Sheriff’s Office would like to remind residents that if a bear is sighted to not approach or attempt to feed the animal. Remember to also keep all children and pets inside if a bear has been spotted in the area. Also, make sure to report any sighting to the local Law Enforcement.
Note from Editor: Please do not attempt to shoot or corral animal. Contact the Iowa DNR or Mahaska County Sheriff’s Office.
Information from Mahaska Sheriff’s Office Press Release.