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Arlington Bear Safely Removed From Tree After Wandering Around Town

ARLINGTON (CBS) - All eyes were on a bear in the town of Arlington Friday morning.

Police got a call around 6:30 a.m. after it was first spotted wandering around on Morningside Drive.  They tweeted out a warning to residents to bring pets inside and delayed the start of classes at a nearby elementary school as a precaution.

About two hours later, the bear was found 35 feet up in a tree in a yard on Osceola Path.

"I went outside and then this lady was like, 'Get back in your house there's a bear in your backyard.' I was like 'uh huh' and she's like, 'I'm serious,' so I'm like, o-k," a little girl told WBZ-TV.

arlington bear
The bear spotted in a tree in Arlington Friday morning. (Photo credit: Jason Goldstein)

The bear stayed in the tree for about two hours before it was tranquilized.

"Basically, its starting to feel the drug, it's losing the strength in its limbs and so it's trying to get down so it doesn't fall, so ideally, that was the ideal situation where it came down on it's own. It didn't fall so there's no chance of injury there," said Dave Wattles, a state wildlife bear biologist.

The bear was put into the back of a Mass Wildlife pick up truck and driven away to a state forest in western Massachusetts, police said. They believe the bear is about three years old and weighs about 130-to-140 pounds.

Wattles said young male bears wander from their natural habitat out west because they can't compete with the older, bigger bears out there. Sometimes, like this bear, they wander a little too far east. Arlington Police said the bear has blue tags, indicating he was tagged for research purposes. He will now get a yellow tag, police said, labeling him as a "nuisance bear."

"Just wonder where he came from," said Lisa Hegel, who pulled over with her four-year-old son on their way to the supermarket.

"It's pretty cool to be able to say we had a bear in our neighborhood," said neighbor Ava Talanian.

No one was hurt in Friday's incident. Some residents were upset by all of the media attention in the neighborhood, including multiple helicopters flying overhead. Others saw the bear visit as a good omen for the Boston Bruins in the Stanley Cup Final.

"I think he came out to celebrate the Bruins win last night, so on to the cup," said neighbor Donny Murphy.

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