Are you Bear Aware? WildSafeBC has great tips on how to reduce conflict with black bears. Especially important this time of year is taking away tempting food sources like fruit left on or around trees. Remember to give wild animals lots of space especially when they’re frightened.
WildSafeBC explains how to prevent bear conflict including these points.
“The bottom line is that habituated bears allow humans to get too close. It is our belief that the best way to avoid conflict is to keep bears from becoming food-conditioned and from becoming human habituated.
Please learn these ways you can keep your neighbourhood safe and share the following with your neighbours:
Garbage (accounts for 55% of calls regarding bears)
- Store garbage in a secure building until collection day or use a bear-resistant container. Vehicles or truck canopys are not always bear proof. Anything that smells like food like dirty recycling containers counts as food.
Fruit Trees and Berries
- Pick fruit and allow it to ripen indoors or pick fruit and berries daily as they ripen. Do not allow windfall to accumulate on the ground.
- Please note that birdseed is a very good source of calories for bears and other wildlife.
- Use bird feeders only in the winter when bears are hibernating and natural bird food is limited.
If you feed birds in bear season, consider the following steps to minimize your contribution to human-bear conflicts:
- Take bird feeders in at night
- Keep the ground underneath the feeders clean and free of bird seed
- Fill your feeders regularly with just a small amount of feed – this will decrease the reward a bear would receive if it does get to your feeder.
- Do not add fish, meat, fat, oils, un-rinsed eggshells or any cooked food.
- Add oxygen by turning regularly.
- Avoid adding cereals or grains.
Pets and pet food
- Feed pets indoors.
- If pets are fed outside, ensure all food is cleaned up.
- Store pet food in a secure location or in a bear-resistant bin.
- Clean barbeques after use by burning off the grill entirely, and store securely.