[Editor's note: A previous version of this story incorrectly stated that the bear was a female.]
NORTH LAKE TAHOE - A bear rescue organization is urging homeowners to block off their home's crawl spaces after a bear became trapped inside one such space.
A black bear was under a house on the north shore of the lake, so the homeowner called his handyman to get the bear out, the Bear League said in a statement on Sunday. The handyman arrived at the home, and in an effort to get the bear out, yelled outside the open crawl space door. When the bear didn't emerge and couldn't be seen, the handyman assumed the bear had left and installed bear wires over the opening to prevent further entry.
However, the bear, who is a male, had been hiding in a back corner of the crawl space and became trapped due to the wires. A neighbor saw the bear trying to chew through a small vent to get out and notified the Bear League, they say. Members of the league went to the home and temporarily removed the wires so the bear could get out, which it eventually did.
The league urges anyone with a crawl space in the Lake Tahoe Area to completely secure their crawl space, and if a bear does get in, to notify them so they can safely evict the bears.
If the bear had been a female, she would not have been evicted since this time of the year is when cubs are born, Bear League executive director Ann Bryant said. Further, removing a bear who is preparing to give birth is illegal.
The stated mission of the non-profit Bear League is to keep bears safe in their natural habitat.
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