Wildlife Alert – Bears

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bear birdfeeder

A bear munching on the author’s suet feeder. I learned to bring my bird feeder in at dusk every single day, even in the winter.

Spring and Early Summer Is The Time For Bear Activity

Spring and early summer is the time of year when we get the most calls about bear activity in home landscapes in Henderson County. Mama bears have hungry cubs to feed so they get more bold in their searching suburban yards for food. Male cubs that have outgrown their mother’s care are out on their own for the first time and may not have learned to keep away from humans and homes.

bear damage claw marks

Bears sometimes shred landscape conifers. They do this to make sap flow. Then rub their back in the sap to repel insects.

What To Do About A Nuisance Bear

You have probably seen videos of dangerous or aggressive bears being captured by wildlife services and released. This is only done in rare instances when bears have either hurt someone or decided to enter someone’s home. For the most part, bears in your yard eating or destroying your bird feeder does not qualify as an emergency. In Henderson County our Animal Control Services is run through the Sheriff’s Office. It is a good idea to report a bear that you think is getting too friendly.

BearWise is a program aims to educate people about living in bear areas. I suggest reading their content.
BearWise Basics:
1. Never feed or approach bears.2. Secure food, garbage, and recycling.3. Remove bird feeders when bears are active. (bring them in at night!!!)4. Never leave pet food outdoors. (only put out one feeding at a time)5. Clean and store grills.

6. Alert neighbors to bear activity. (if the whole neighborhood use scare tactics when they see a bear maybe it will leave for good)

As for deterring bears, they are pretty much going to do what they want to do. You can purchase and use a high decibel horn to scare them away when you see them. I have reports from  a client who used one whenever he saw a nuisance bear in his yard and the loud noise eventually scared the animal off.