Just before the alarm went off, Jessie spotted the bear outside the bedroom window, under the bird feeder, and the dogs' frantic barking began. I turned on all the outside lights, waited a few minutes, and "released the hounds".
The bird feeder is on a cable that runs between the roof of the deck on the second floor, and a tree, so it's about 12 - 14 ft. off the ground. The birds are very messy, and a lot of seeds and nuts get spilled onto the ground. This isn't our first bear visitor, and this spot under the feeder is where they've always been seen, including the sow and her three cubs we had in the trees several years ago.