Bear Spotted near Residential Area in Japan’s Akita Pref.; ‘Never Heard of Bear Appearing This Time of Year’

The Yomiuri Shimbun
Police officers guard a warehouse at 4:50 p.m. on Tuesday in Akita where a bear was found earlier in the day.

AKITA — Police received a phone call report that a bear was found in a warehouse in the Goshonoyumoto district of Akita City, Akita Prefecture, at 11:30 a.m. on Tuesday. Police officers rushed to the site and soon confirmed a bear in the warehouse.

However, they failed to capture it by Tuesday evening. From Wednesday morning, the Akita city government officials and others were to implement attempts to capture it, by setting a box trap after closing the warehouse’s entrance and exit.

According to police, the bear was about 1 meter long. There is an elementary school and a large commercial facility about 700 meters away from the warehouse.

In the neighboring area, residents were watching the scene. A 73-year-old resident said, “I’ve never heard of a bear appearing this time of year [mid winter]. I’ll have to tell my grandchildren who are in elementary school that it’s dangerous here.”