WINFIELD, Kan. (KSNW) – Is it a bear?
“I was looking through my Ring camera, scrolling videos, and there it was,” said Maverick Osenbaugh, who lives on the north end of Winfield. “What is that? I was like, oh, that’s a raccoon. I watched it walk out into the driveway, and I was like, that’s not a raccoon. That’s a bear.”
The video was captured on Maverick’s front porch on Jan. 8.
So far, the Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks agrees it looks like a bear cub.
“But it certainly looks like a bear cub from everything we can see,” said furbearer biologist Matt Peek with Kansas Wildlife and Parks. “Well, we sent this (video) to some bear biologists from other states and had them look at it. A couple of them said that it definitely was a bear and a couple of them were uncertain. So I mean, like I say, it appears to be a bear.”
Peek does not think it’s a domesticated bear cub. Special rules apply for owning large carnivores in Kansas, and Peek says none are in the area.
But Peek also says he wants more video. Unfortunately, the video does not show the face of the animal.
“They tell me this would be a cub from last year, probably born in the spring,” said Maverick, who asked biologists in Kansas and Missouri about his find. “I wonder if we’ll ever see it again. It could be from captivity. We’ll never know.”
Peek says there are sightings infrequently in extreme southeast and extreme southwest Kansas but nothing in a city.
Other questions to be answered include why the possible bear cub would be out during the hibernating season. Also, where is the mama bear? Peek says if there is a problem with a mother bear, the cub will wander.
“I just want more video,” said Peek. “If anyone has any, we want to see it.”