Bear cub found roaming in Maple Grove being cared for by Wild & Free Wildlife Rehabilitation

A bear cub that was safely captured in a Maple Grove neighborhood on Tuesday is now being cared for by the Wild & Free Wildlife Rehabilitation Organization in Garrison.

The nonprofit shared in a Facebook post that the bear will be released into the wild next spring.

The seven-pound female cub was sitting in a tree when she was discovered Tuesday morning.

RELATED: DNR kills black bear spotted in north Minneapolis

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) said the state’s bear population, estimated at nearly 16,000 statewide, is slowly migrating south, with some reports near the Iowa border.

The DNR says there were just over 1,000 bear sightings in 2022, 300 more than the year before.

Experts say a ready food supply may be luring more bears out of the woods, with sources such as bird feeders, garbage cans and barbecue grills.