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Bear Roams in Thousand Oaks

April 29, 2006|From the Associated Press

A bear that has roamed Thousand Oaks hillsides for the last few days is probably hungry after a long winter's sleep and shouldn't pose a danger unless provoked, authorities said.

The bear was sighted Wednesday and Thursday in the eastern area of town, including on a ridgeline in the gated North Ranch Country Club Estates.

It was also spotted near Westlake High School, which is south of that neighborhood.

Lou Miraglia said he looked out the window and saw the bear about 20 feet away, just beyond his patio.

"We looked at each other for three or four minutes," Miraglia said. "He was beautiful, had a great coat. It looked like it should have been in the zoo."

A plan to shoot the bear with tranquilizing darts was stymied when the animal wandered away before the tranquilizer arrived.

The bear may have roamed into town from the nearby Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area, said Troy Swauger, a spokesman for the state Department of Fish and Game.

The bear was believed to weigh about 300 pounds, far short of the 600 pounds to 800 pounds for the average adult.

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