ALTADENA (CBS) — Three bears were spotted outside an Altadena home just after 11 a.m. Thursday morning.
Fish and Game officers were on the scene to determine if the animals posed a danger, which were initially seen climbing through a tree in the 1400 block of Edgecliff Lane before they came down and began prowling through residential backyards.
Trash cans may have lured the female bear and her two cubs into the neighborhood, which is a mile from the Angeles National Forest.
“At some point they will return to where they came from,” Los Angeles Sheriff’s Sgt. Debra Herman told CBS2.
Dr. Lynn Rogers, chief biologist for the North American Bear Center told KNX 1070 NEWSRADIO despite their size, the bears likely pose no threat to anyone — provided they don’t feel threatened themselves.
“Black bears are basically shy and risk-averse,” said Rogers. “What they eat and what they do depend on their alternatives.”
Officials said bear sightings in the area are not unusual, especially during this time of year when they begin emerging from hibernation.
(UPDATE: Thursday 9 p.m.) The bears have returned to their normal habitat, down a ravine in Eaton Canyon.
Rob Schmitt, reporting for CBS2 and KCAL9, and his crew snuck into a home under construction for an up-close look at the bears as they climbed trees.
The bears also “took a lot of naps,” reported Schmitt.
The mother was very big, he estimated her to be between 400 and 500 pounds.
After climbing down one tree, the cubs wrestled around for a bit. Schmitt said, “about as cute as it gets. Finally, mom said ‘Let’s go.'”
Resident Britton Hammock said it wasn’t unusual for neighbors here to see bears roaming about. “We always see them…they swim in our pool. They knock over trash. They come right over to us.”