A Ring doorbell captured a surprise encounter between an Asheville man and a black bear, as reported Tuesday.
David Oppenheimer was sitting in his lounge chair in his carport when his Ring doorbell chimed, he told WLOS. Because Oppenheimer lives in Western North Carolina — where bears are prevalent — he searched to see if one had triggered the camera, but did not find any animals.
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From his lounge chair, the video shows, Oppenheimer kept looking at his phone, unaware of a bear approaching. As the bear approached the carport, Oppenheimer noticed it and pushed himself backwards in shock. The bear, also startled and with its ears pointing forward, paused for a few seconds before running away as soon as Oppenheimer looked at it. (RELATED: New ‘Winnie The Pooh’ Horror Film Inexplicably Yanked From Chinese Cinemas)
“It definitely startled me, more because it was unexpected than because it was a bear, and it seems startled, too,” Oppenheimer told WLOS.
Oppenheimer has lived in his Asheville home for 15 years and said he has seen bears approaching more often during the daytime, he told WLOS. The bears are peaceful and the neighborhood has acclimated to them, he told WLOS.
The statewide Wildlife Hotline received 400 bear-related calls from Buncombe County in 2017 and more than 700 in 2022, according to the North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission.