Ahote, the 300 pound black bear that escaped from the safety of the Adirondack Wildlife Refuge in Wilmington, New York has been located and returned to her home.

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Ahote, which means 'Restless One', escaped the refuge Thursday morning and had been spotted a few times over the last several days. One spotting was within a mile of where she lives. As of Monday officials had discovered where she had been hanging out but the bear wouldn't follow them home. According to the Adirondack Wildlife Refuge Facebook page, details on the rescue will be published today.

While Ahote was away, the Adirondack Wildlife Refuge fixed the digging issue with the installation of an electric fence. This isn't the first time Ahote has escaped. In 2019, she was gone for 2 weeks.

The Wildlife Refuge was closed for a week, as workers and volunteers searched for the four and a half year old sow. Now that Ahote has been found and safely returned, the facility will reopen to the public on Thursday from 10 to 4.

What should you do if you encounter a black bear? First thing to know is that typically, if the bear knows you are around, he wants little to nothing to do with you and will leave. So when you do see one remain calm. Here are some tips from the Humane Society:

  • Stand and face the bear directly.
  • Don't run from the bear and NEVER approach him.
  • Make yourself look as big as possible.
  • Make as much noise as possible. Yell!, Bang pots and pans! Whatever you can think of.
  • After the bear leaves, remove whatever attracted him to the location.
  • This one is comforting. In the very rare case that a black bear does attack you, fight back (don’t play dead).
  • My suggestion is to watch the bear scene from The Revenant. Leo held his own, you can too.

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