Pest Alert – Shredded Trees in Mountain Landscapes? Perhaps It Is Bear Damage
Bears occasionally damage trees. Homeowners who have witnessed their trees being demolished by the pesky bruins say that the bear uses the tree as a scratching post for their claws and a back scratcher. Also, smaller bears seem to enjoy climbing small trees and bending them down to the ground, sometimes breaking the trees in the process.
For some reason bears like to rub their backs on conifers. Possibly tree sap controls bugs such as tick and fleas that pester the animals. Or perhaps they they just like the smell. Whatever the reason, bears can cause some serious damage to landscape trees.
What can be done to prevent bears from damaging trees? Not much. Bears are not easily deterred. Damaged trees usually live but quite often they are mangled to the point that gardeners prefer to cut the trees down.