GF&P reports bear sightings on the increase in Black Hills

RAPID CITY, S.D. (AP) — Wildlife officials are urging caution as the number of black bear sightings have increased in the Black Hills.

Bears have been recently been sighted in Lead, Spearfish, Johnson Siding and last weekend in Rapid City.

Mike Klosowski, regional supervisor for South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks, says officials are confident it’s multiple bears that have been sighted, not the same one.

Officials say the number of confirmed sightings has been increasing 10 to 15 times in recent years.

Although observing a black bear in populated areas might be exciting, Klosowski warns the public to stay away from the predator and watch from a safe distance.