Bears sighted in Rifle are safely relocated |

Bears sighted in Rifle are safely relocated

A black bear wanders into Bears Stadium on the campus of Rifle High School on Monday afternoon. Bears have been seen wandering around Rifle for the past week.
Halah Harmon / Courtesy Photo |

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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