Bears are attracted to homes and cabins by garbage and bird feeders. Pet food, charcoal grills, fruit trees and gardens may also attract bears. Once a bear finds food around your home it will likely return.
Never feed bears--They will associate people with food and may become a problem.
To minimize bear problems on your property:
- Reduce garbage odors. Rinse food cans and wrappers before disposal.
- Compost vegetable scraps.
- Keep meat scraps in your freezer until garbage pickup day.
- Wash garbage cans regularly and use lime to cut odors.
- Keep garbage cans in a bear-proof container or in a garage until the morning of pickup.
- Remove bird feeders in the spring. If you persist in feeding birds during the summer, remove seed, suet, and hummingbird feeders at night.
- Keep pet food inside.
- Keep barbecue grills and picnic tables clean.
- Use an energized fence* to keep bears out of beehives, sweet corn, fruit trees and berry patches. Barking dogs, bright lights and noisemakers will sometimes discourage bears from coming into an area.
*An energized fence is powered by a low-impedance, high-voltage energizer which provides a short-duration, high-energy impulse.
If a bear comes into your yard:
- Don't panic! Don't shoot! Don't approach it!
- Learn to tolerate bears. Many bears are killed or injured when not causing problems.
- Most bears fear people and will leave when they see you. If a bear woofs, snaps its jaws, slaps the ground or brush, or bluff charges, you are too close!
- Back away slowly.
- Go inside and wait for the bear to leave.
If a bear refuses to leave:
- Make loud noises or throw something to scare it away.
- Always allow the bear an escape route.
If the bear is treed:
- Leave it alone! The bear will usually go away when it feels safe.
- Have people leave the area.
- Remove your dog from the area.
Learn to tolerate bears. Many bears are killed or injured when not causing problems.