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S.W. Florida Daily News


Bear Seen Making a Quick Stop at Publix in Naples

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pub bear.jpg

Bear Spotted Going on a Publix Run in Naples

A bear sighting in Naples is not an unusual occurrence, but when news came out that a bear was spotted going on a Publix run, it made headlines. The bear was seen rummaging through the aisles of the Publix store, looking for something to eat. It was a surreal scene for the shoppers, who were caught off guard by the unexpected visit.

The Background of the Bear Sightings in Naples

The state of Florida is home to a large population of black bears, estimated to be around 4,000. The primary reason for their increase in numbers is the conservation efforts by the state, which has implemented measures to protect the bears and their habitat. However, their increasing population has also led to a rise in bear-human encounters.

In Naples, bears have become a common sight, with several sightings reported every year. They are particularly active during the spring and early summer when they come out of their winter hibernation and look for food. Bears are omnivores and will eat anything from fruits, nuts, and berries to insects, small animals, and human food.

A Bear Goes on a Publix Run

What started as a routine shopping trip turned into an unforgettable experience for the shoppers at the Publix store on Immokalee Road. Customers were surprised to see a bear wandering through the aisles, searching for something to eat. The bear apparently entered the store through the automatic sliding doors of the store’s front entrance.

The store employees immediately sprang into action, alerting the shoppers to stay away from the bear as they attempted to coax the bear out of the store. The bear, unfazed by all the commotion, continued to roam around the store, sniffing at the products on the shelves.

One shopper, who was at the store during the incident, remarked that they were rattled by the sight of the bear. They said that they never expected to see a wild animal walking around the store as if it was a usual thing.

Another shopper captured part of the event on their phone. The video showed the bear walking through the store’s dairy section, apparently searching for food. The video quickly went viral, garnering thousands of views on social media.

The Response of the Authorities

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) was notified of the incident and dispatched a team to the Publix store. The team managed to coax the bear out of the store without any injuries or damage to property. The FWC also issued a warning to the public to be mindful of their surroundings, particularly during bear season, and refrain from feeding or approaching bears.

Bears are usually averse to human contact, but they can become aggressive if they are cornered or feel threatened. The FWC recommends that people keep a safe distance of at least 100 yards from bears, especially if they have cubs.

The Aftermath of the Incident

The bear sighting at the Publix store became the talk of the town, with many people sharing their thoughts on social media. Some people found the bear adorable and thought that it was an exciting experience. Others were more concerned about the safety of the shoppers and wondered why the bear was not tranquilized.

Publix released a statement, assuring its customers that it takes their safety seriously and that it was working closely with the authorities to ensure that such incidents do not happen again. The store also apologized for any inconvenience caused to its customers.

The Importance of Coexisting With Wildlife

The incident highlighted the importance of coexisting with wildlife, particularly in urban areas. As human populations continue to grow, they are increasingly encroaching on wildlife habitats, leading to more encounters with wild animals. It is therefore essential to educate people on how to coexist with wild animals and minimize conflicts.

The FWC recommends that people secure their trash cans, avoid leaving pet food outside, and remove any other food attractants from their yards. They also encourage people to give wild animals their space and not approach or feed them.

The Conclusion

The bear spotted going on a Publix run in Naples was an unusual event that caught the attention of the public. Although it created a bit of a stir, nobody was hurt, and the bear was safely removed from the store. The incident served as a reminder that bears and other wild animals are a natural part of our environment and that we need to learn to coexist with them. By adopting simple measures like securing trash cans, we can reduce encounters and minimize conflicts, making it a win-win for both humans and wildlife.


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