Black bear spotted in tree at Orlando's Lake Eola Park; FWC monitoring

Lake Eola Park has been swarmed with people trying to catch a glimpse of a black bear stuck in a tree. 

The "Bear Watch" has been going on since Sunday morning when the young black bear was spotted in a tree near Relax Grill.

Pictures and video sent to FOX 35 from Randy Davison capture the bear hanging out in the tree. 

"I heard somebody say it and I was like a black bear? What?" said Alexis Fillmore. Florida Fish and Wildlife (FWC) said the bear is roughly 50-feet up in a tree. One person captured this video of the bear climbing higher into the tree. Dozens and dozens of people filtered through the park to see the bear. All were shocked to see a bear in the middle of the city.

"No not at all. It’s crazy," said Hailey Edwards.

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Credit: Randy Davison

"This is the last place I would think you’d find a bear at," said Chet Galloway. Amateur photographer, Galloway, rushed to Lake Eola when he heard of the bear. He spent hours photographing the young bear.


"This is the first bear I’ve captured in the wild. I guess if you want to call it the wild," said Galloway. 

FWC along with the Orlando Police Department blocked off the area while monitoring the bear. They brought in a cage in hopes of trapping the bear safely, so they can relocate it.

In late April, another juvenile bear was spotted wandering around Central Florida near Altamonte Springs. The bear was also spotted in College Park, but was later hit and killed by a car in the early morning hours.  

According to the FWC, during this time of year, bears are more active. Juvenile bears are starting to leave their mother’s home range and may be seen in unexpected areas as they try to find a new home. 

"We have a couple bears a year manage to find their way into downtown Orlando and they usually find a way out," said FWC Bear Program Coordinator Mike Orlando.

Typically, these bears will move away on their own. If you see a bear, give it space, don’t try to approach it, and never feed it.

Everyone FOX 35 spoke with is hoping for a happy ending for the bear. FWC said if you do see a black bear in your neighborhood, give it space and leave it be.

Contact the FWC Wildlife Alert Hotline at 888-404-3922 if you feel threatened by a bear.