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Bear killed on I-70

July 07, 2009

Department of Natural Resources officials on Sunday removed the body of a bear that was killed in traffic from an area near the 14-mile marker on Interstate 70.

It's the fourth carcass picked up in Washington County this year, said Harry Spiker with the DNR's Wildlife and Heritage Service.

Maryland State Police told DNR about the bear.

"This time of year, there's a lot of movement because yearling juveniles are dispersing, trying to find a territory of their own. It's also the peak of breeding season," Spiker said.

The male black bear was removed and measured. It weighed in at 120 pounds.

Such measurements are taken because they help track the population, said Spiker, who works out of Garrett County, Md. Mortality trends help gauge the population over time.

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Another dead bear was removed from a roadway in Frederick County, Md., this year.

"We've got a reproducing population that's going well in all four western Maryland counties," Spiker said.

The animal recovered Sunday was buried on land owned by the DNR, Spiker said.

Black bears are fast and it's hard for drivers to see them on the road at night, he said.

-- Erin Julius

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