A black bear was still at large in downtown Myrtle Beach Wednesday afternoon.
S.C. Department of Natural Resources and Myrtle Beach police combed a small wooded area, looking for a bear that was last seen early Wednesday morning and is likely hiding in the woods.
Officers were called about 6:30 a.m. to the area of Carver Street and Oak Street, just blocks from the Myrtle Beach Police Department, after a bear was spotted and caught on camera by an officer. The bear was seen in woods beside a church and in the backyard of several homes and apartment buildings.
The thick brush has made it harder for officers to spot the bear, said Capt. Joey Crosby, spokesman with Myrtle Beach police. A bear was spotted on the north end of the city several years ago, Crosby said.
"It's rare that this occurs," he said. "We encourage the public to contact the police department if they see the bear, and please under no circumstances do not attempt to approach the bear."
S.C. DNR worked through the morning to find the bear in efforts to catch an relocate the bear.
Lance Cpl. Ronnie Floyd said the bear, which looks to be between 100 and 200 pounds, is likely scared.
"Right now we really don't know where it's at," Floyd said. "Just keep your distance. He's probably feeling a little scared."
Because the bear is in a developed area, it will likely be tranquilized then relocated when it's found, Floyd said.
Hannah Strong: 843-444-1765, @HannahLStrong