A woman in Daytona Beach was startled in the middle of the night by a sneaky four-legged intruder.
Gina Helsel spoke about the big bear scare that took place on her front porch, early Thursday morning.
Helsel told her dog it was time to clear the porch for cats. All was normal, until a bear poked its head around the corner.
“The bear was getting in the neighbors’ trash, and I caught it in the act,” she said.
Ring doorbell video captured Helsel letting out a prolonged loud scream.
“My brother called me last night and was cracking up. He was like, ‘Gina, only you would scream like that,'” she said,
The good news is that once Helsel and her dog made a run for it, the bear did as well.
“The bear is mostly focused on the dog, and it basically, you know, kind of lunges, does a little bit of a left charge,” said bear biologist Mike Orlando, “and then, when her and her dog retreat, the bear runs away.”
Meaning the bear was likely not an aggressive one.
“They just all startled each other, you know, and she probably wasn’t prepared to have a bear sitting there,” said Orlando, “and the bear probably wasn’t prepared to have her show up with the dog.”
“I’m always looking for gators, I’m always looking for snakes, and I have this great fear of, like, a coyote or something,” said Helsel, “but bears, I just don’t really think about.”
Helsel said she’s happy the bear survived the scare, too.
“I am glad the bear’s OK, I don’t want anything to happen to the bear,” she said. “The bear was doing what – it lives here.”
Officials remind residents to secure garbage, remove food from outside and refrain from feeding the bears.
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