3 Bears Keep Cool in Calif. Pool, Raid Trash Bin | NBC New York
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3 Bears Keep Cool in Calif. Pool, Raid Trash Bin

California's black bear population is on the rise, and sightings are not unusual in SoCal foothill neighborhoods

Bears frolicked in a pool and went hunting for goodies in a garbage bin Thursday. Lolita Lopez reports for the NBC4 News at 4 on Thursday, Sept. 1, 2016. (Published Thursday, Sept. 1, 2016)

Three bears had a pool party and trash bin buffet Thursday when they visited a neighborhood in the foothills northeast of Pasadena.

The black bears, an adult and two cubs, went for a swim in a backyard pool on a nearly 90-degree day in the community just south of Angeles National Forest. The cubs scaled a cement wall and jumped into a large metal trash bin, likely containing discarded food, in the driveway of a home.

After chowing down in the blue bin, the bears appeared to wander off into trees. 

California's black bear population, estimated at between 10,000 to 15,000 in 1982, has increased significantly over the past two decades. The statewide black bear population is now estimated at about 25,000 to 30,000. About 40 percent of California's black bear population can be found in the Sierra Nevada Mountains.

Family of Bears Roam Pasadena Neighborhood

[NATL-LA] Family of Bears Roam Pasadena Neighborhood
A bear and two cubs went roaming around a Pasadena neighborhood, at one point taking a dip in a pool, on Thursday, Sept. 1, 2016. (Published Thursday, Sept. 1, 2016)

A much smaller percentage of the bear population inhabits the central western and southwestern part of the state. Bear sightings are not unusual in Southern California foothill neighborhoods, where trash bins left unsecured offer a treat for hungry bears.

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