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Woodbury bear: Afton-bound?

This black bear was seen around Woodbury, including the Tamarack Road area, where it was pictured in this photo, courtesy of Woodbury Public Safety.

Woodbury's bear is staying on the move.

Multiple sightings continued to be reported on Tuesday after the black bear was spotted the last several days visiting everything from backyards to businesses in Woodbury.

That included one report around 11 a.m. Tuesday when police received a report that the bear was lying injured in a ditch along Manning Avenue.

That turned out to be an inaccurate report, said Woodbury police spokeswoman Michelle Okada. She said an officer located the bear there, "determined it was fine," and watched it move along.

The bear was last seen headed east toward Afton.

Okada said police are under orders to respond to bear encounters "according to the situation at hand." If the bear poses an immediate threat to the public, officers are instructed to put it down, Okada said.

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources clarified the concept of a public safety threat in a Tuesday news release.

“A public safety threat is a public safety threat, whether it’s a guy wielding a knife or a startled or frightened large mammal with big teeth and sharp claws in a neighborhood with lots of kids,” said DNR Capt. Greg Salo. “Your first call should be to the local police department. No one likes to see these animals killed just for being in the wrong place at the wrong time, but sometimes that’s the only real option.”

Mike Longaecker

Mike Longaecker is the regional public safety reporter for RiverTown Multimedia. His coverage area spans St. Croix and Pierce counties. Longaecker served from 2011-2015 as editor of the Woodbury Bulletin. A University of Wisconsin-River Falls graduate, Longaecker previously reported for the Red Wing Republican Eagle and for the Forum Communications Minnesota Capitol Bureau. You can follow him on Twitter at @Longaecker

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