The Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry and Thunder  Bay Police are asking people around the city of Thunder Bay to be on the look out for a roaming bear, after a man had a close encounter earlier this week.

The MNR reports a man on Garden Avenue, off Arthur street, was taken down by a bear on Tuesday.

"An individual was walking in his backyard and was taken down, by his ankles, by a bear. When the man turned over to realize it was a bear, he managed to fend the bear off and get to safety," said ministry spokesperson Rick Hagdu.

"The bear was not seen again since."

The man was unharmed.

Hagdu noted an investigation found garbage had been left out in the area, which likely attracted the bear.

There was also a recent incident with a bear in the Mapleward area, he added.

Garbage and food attractants are the primary cause of bears coming into neighbourhoods, which is why Thunder Bay Police and the MNR are reminding people that garbage, ripe fruit on trees, bird food and odours from barbecues attract bears.