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Have you found a black bear den? Tell the DEC

Have you found a black bear den?

First, back away slowly, or you’ll end up like Leonardo DiCaprio’s character in “The Revenant.”

Then, let the state Department of Environmental Conservation know.

The DEC’s wildlife biologists are seeking the public’s help in learning about black bears and their dens.

Bears are known to hibernate in rock crevices, in tree cavities, under heavy brush or even under a fallen tree.

This time of year, there may be cubs in the dens, so you may hear a high-pitched squeal from the baby bears, officials said.

The DEC doesn’t want people to approach or disturb the dens. But they’d like anyone who comes across one to note the location and “move away from the den.”

“There is great value in having resident participation for this type of wildlife research,” said DEC Acting Commissioner Basil Seggos. “DEC’s wildlife biologists use public feedback from these studies as a guidance measure for future wildlife management and planning efforts. I encourage anyone that encounters a bear den to follow our safety instructions and reach out to their local DEC office for reporting.”

Anyone locating a bear den can contact their local DEC Wildlife office with specifics about the den location, including GPS coordinates, if possible.

More information about black bears in New York is available at the DEC website.