ASHEVILLE, North Carolina (WJW) – A man relaxing outside his North Carolina home was startled when he came face to face with a black bear.
It turns out, however, that the bear was just as surprised as him.
As seen in video captured on security camera, David Oppenheimer was lounging outside his Asheville home, scrolling on his phone when the unexpected guest strolled up next to him.
Startled, Oppenheimer jumps and lifts up a pillow. The bear, also clearly caught off guard, looks at him and they lock eyes for a few seconds.
“I was a little frightened because it was right there and I didn’t know what it would do,” Oppenheimer told USA Today.
The bear is then seen running off the way it came. Oppenheimer told USA Today that the bear seemed more confused than afraid.
He told the news outlet that the bear was seen wandering his backyard earlier that day.
“Chillaxing at the end of the day, didn’t expect to make eye contact so close. Good thing we’re already acquainted,” Oppenheimer said in a Facebook post.
Black bears, which are the only bear species native to the eastern United States, is commonly found throughout North Carolina.
According to the North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission, the black bear population was very low in the mid-1900s, but now they can be found in 60% of the state.
Closer to home, a Geauga County resident spotted a black bear tearing up the bird feeder in his yard last week.
So, what should you do during a bear encounter in the wild? The National Park Service has some helpful tips.