This is a photo from the Twitter account of Alpharetta Mayor Jim Gilvin showing a bear seen swimming in Lake Windward.
Photo: Mayor Jim Gilvin's Twitter
Photo: Mayor Jim Gilvin's Twitter

Bear seen swimming in Alpharetta lake

Even bears take to the lake when the temperature rises.

A black bear was seen swimming in northeast Alpharetta’s Lake Windward on Wednesday morning, the city said on Facebook.

“The bear is unlikely to be a threat to anyone unless people approach or provoke it,” the city said.

However, the post did encourage visitors of the Big Creek Greenway for the next few days to make noise so bears can be aware people are there.

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The city said in mid-April that bear sightings had begun.

“They aren’t interested in us and our lives,” Melissa Cummings, a spokeswoman with the wildlife division of the Georgia Department of Natural Resources, said at the time.

According to BearWise, male bears have home ranges of up to 300 square miles, but for female bears it’s usually no more than 50 square miles. 

In the post about the swimming bear Wednesday, someone commented asking why the bear hadn’t been captured and relocated to a more suitable spot.

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The city responded in part by explaining the likely young bear’s actions: “Typically, they have matured to an age at which it is time for them to live on their own, and Mama Bear has kicked them out of the den. They do not tend to stay in the area, as suburban communities like Alpharetta are not really where young bears want to live. As such, the best practice is to leave them alone and let them pass on through.”

Alpharetta Mayor Jim Gilvin tweeted a picture of the bear gliding by some docks, including a note: “I need to keep a closer eye on my dog when he’s outside!”

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The city of Alpharetta put out a warning to neighbors after a black bear was spotted swimming across Lake Windward -- again.

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