State law allows residents to kill bears caught destroying property.

A Middleton resident shot and killed a black bear on Friday morning after it killed some livestock.

The bear, an adult male, killed two goats on the property around 7.30pm on Thursday.

The 80-pound animal returned to the mansion at 8:30 am on Friday and killed eight chickens, According to to 7 News. A resident saw a bear att*cking chickens, then shot the bear and called the police.

According to the report, the bear is believed to be the same that has roamed other North Shore communities in recent months. Middleton is approximately 20 miles north of Boston.

Under state law, residents can kill bears that are actively damaging their property. No allegations were made in connection with Friday’s incident.

Massachusetts Environmental Police (MEP) says Black bears killing chickens and damaging hen houses are a common source of conflict between humans and bears in the state – especially as residential henhouses are gaining ground. MassWildlife and MEPs say they receive phone calls daily about bears breaking into henhouses.

Environmental officials say chicken nets won’t stop bears, and electric fences are the only way to protect chickens from bears.

It is estimated that over 4,500 black bears live in Massachusetts. While typical of the central and western parts of the state, in recent years black bears have been roaming further east, now becoming a common sight near Interstate 495.

Environmental officials don’t usually intervene if they spot a bear. However, if a resident thinks a bear poses a risk to people or property, he or she should contact the local MassNature poviat starosty.

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