AUBURN, Calif. (KTXL) — Students and staff at Placer High School were asked to shelter in place Wednesday after a bear found its way into a tree at nearby School Park.
“The first question that I asked was, ‘What the heck is this bear doing up during the day?’” said Auburn City Manager John Donlevy.
Donlevy said it’s not unusual to hear about bears within Auburn city limits at night but seeing one during the day just a block away from Placer High School, prompted some precautions.
The high school was locked down for an hour, and California Department of Fish and Wildlife Warden Kyle Glau went to the area. He could have tranquilized the bear, but he said the animal was behaving normally and did not pose a threat.
“We determined that the best course of action was to keep the bear in the tree and in this small park area because trying to tranquilize him and move him probably would have more hurt him or cause a bigger situation,” Glau said.
The city closed the park, taping off the entrances.
“We don’t want the bear to endanger anybody, but we also don’t want people to endanger the bear,” Donlevy said. “Our goal is really simple. It’s just to allow this bear to climb down sometime tonight and go home.”
Some locals went to the area to try and catch a glimpse.
“So, of course, it’s exciting to come do a drive-by and see a bear in town,” said Rose Bauer.
As the sun went down, the bear was still up in the tree.
“We’ll name this bear the Endurance Bear for the amount of time that it’s going to stay up in that tree waiting for everybody to go away so it can go home,” said Auburn Police Chief Ryan Kinnan.