COURTENAY, B.C – A Comox resident had a very close encounter with a bear Monday morning.

Suzanne Judge says her boyfriend got quite a shock after he noticed a bear at the front of their house Monday morning.

“(It was) 1:30 in the morning and my boyfriend heard something outside… he thought somebody was in our garbage can,” said Judge.

“He opened the front door and it was literally right beside out steps, so it was maybe two feet from the house.”

Judge lives in the Landcaster Heights area, beside the Quality Foods in Comox and says this was the first time in 11 years that they have seen a bear.

Conservation Officer James Hilgemann says bear season is here and wants to remind residents not to leave things out that would attract them to the area.

“Bear season is in full swing, so you can anticipate bears in all your neighbourhoods, and the key right now is to not have attractants readily available to the bears,” said Hilgemann.

He added that once a bear discovers a source of food, it’s likely it will be back.

“If they discover garbage they will be back, it’s a learned behaviour, and we certainly don’t want that.”

Hilgemann says the best approach when you see a bear is to get out of the area, and contact the Report All Poachers and Polluters ( RRAP ) number at 1-877-952-7277.