After hearing snoring noises all winter, some California residents discovered a family of five bears was hibernating under their house.
A Facebook post by BEAR League, a nonprofit organization that strives to help people "live in harmony" with bears, detailed the incident on Tuesday.
As stated in the post, residents said they kept hearing "odd rumbling, snoring-like noises" throughout the winter but ignored it because "it simply didn't make any sense".
When the bears woke up, they prepared to exit and that's when the resident discovered there was a bear under the house.
The BEAR League was called and immediately arrived to "uninvite Mama bear", which is a process that involves “being territorial and scary, thereby making the bear believe it’s not going to be safe there anymore.” The process is never meant to physically hurt bears.
The residents and league were unaware that four young cubs were living under the house too. The mother bear had three cubs last year before adopting an orphaned cub nine months later.
As per HuffPost, BEAR League's Executive Director Ann Bryant stated that bears adopting cubs is considered to be rare but in this case, the cub's biological mother had been hit by a car. During the winter, the family of bears entered a crawl space opening and settled in.
Bryant explained that the process of getting the bears to vacate the area entailed "being territorial and scary, thereby making the bear believe it's not going to be safe there anymore."
She added that volunteers never harm bears physically but that "sometimes we do hurt their feelings."
The BEAR league then installed an electrical barrier in the crawl space to give a small shock to bears trying to enter.
“Each winter, about 100 to 150 of our bears attempt to hibernate under homes here at Tahoe,” Bryant said. “The BEAR League is kept very busy moving bears out of these crawl spaces, often several bears each day.”
The BEAR league concluded that to avoid bears hibernating during the winter, people should close up any crawl spaces that have "cave-like" openings.