Scott Condon

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August 20, 2014
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Bears sighted in Rifle are safely relocated

RIFLE — Tanya Portlock was sitting in her front yard off Railroad Avenue across the street from the Garfield County Fairgrounds with her husband, her mother-in-law and her kids around 7 p.m. Sunday, when she noticed a mother black bear and two cubs walking through the residential area.

“She was following Rifle Creek and just went right into the neighborhood,” Portlock said. “It happened so quickly. I don’t know if anyone else saw them, but we saw them. I called Animal Control, hoping they would watch them. We have lot of kids around that ride bikes.”

Portlock, a Rifle native, said that she expects to see bears when she’s out camping, but not from her front yard.

Officers with Colorado Parks and Wildlife had reportedly been trying to capture the bear and her cubs, which have been sighted all over Rifle.

Portlock’s neighbor, Jim Nelsen said, wildlife officers capture the group early Tuesday and relocated them.

Robin Steffans with the Rifle Police Department said whenever authorities get reports of bears in residential areas, they try to get them moved.

“We do our best to shoo them away from people and livestock,” she said.

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The Post Independent Updated Aug 20, 2014 11:08PM Published Aug 21, 2014 06:02PM Copyright 2014 The Post Independent. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.