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Bears Are Out; Be Bear Aware
Posted By Editor On April 24, 2013 @ 6:42 pm In Colorado Agencies,Variety | Comments Disabled
Bears Are Out; Be Bear Aware This Summer
Black bears have emerged from their winter dens and it’s time for Colorado residents to take precautions to help keep bears wild.
Because of dry conditions in some parts of the state, Colorado Parks and Wildlife officials are cautioning residents that bear activity in towns and residential areas may be high again this year. Human-bear conflicts are a fact of life in Colorado, but with some simple actions residents of bear country can help to significantly reduce those conflicts.
The biggest issue in conflict situations is the availability of human sources of food — garbage, pet food, livestock food, compost piles, bird feeders, chicken pens, etc. Bears have a phenomenal sense of smell and can pick up odors of food sources from miles away.
“Bears receive a big calorie reward if they get into something like pet food, or bird seed or leftover pizza,” explained Patt Dorsey, southwest regional manager for Colorado Parks and Wildlife. “Once they get a taste they quickly become habituated to human food and conflicts start. When that happens, things usually don’t go well for the bear.”
Once black bears have discovered a food source they may defend it and can become dangerous. Those types of situations can be dangerous and it is undesirable to have wild, unpredictable animals in close proximity to people.
“Some bears can be relocated. But bears deemed dangerous must be destroyed. We put down problem bears because we have to, not because we want to,” Dorsey said.
From the Front Range to the mountains to the Western Slope, Colorado offers bears good natural habitat. Bears will go to the areas with the best food availability, and it’s best that they find their food in the wild. If food sources in town are limited, bears will likely spend more time in wild lands.
Colorado residents play a major role in keeping bears wild, explained Renzo DelPiccolo, area wildlife manager in Montrose.
“The public can help us by being conscientious and not leaving any types of food available to bears,” DelPiccolo said. “Without the public’s diligence in reducing human sources of food, we have limited success in avoiding and reducing conflicts.”
Please, follow these tips to keep bears out of trouble and to reduce conflicts:
For more information, go to the Living with Wildlife section on the Colorado Parks and Wildlife website: http://wildlife.state.co.us/WildlifeSpecies/LivingWithWildlife/Pages/LivingWith.aspx .
If you know of someone in your neighborhood or town who is intentionally feeding wildlife, please call the nearest Colorado Parks and Wildlife office to make a report.
If you would like a wildlife officer to come to your neighborhood or homeowners’ association to talk about bears or other wildlife issues, contact your local Parks and Wildlife office. For more news about Division of Wildlife go to: http://wildlife.state.co.us/NewsMedia/PressReleases 
For more information about Division of Wildlife go to: http://wildlife.state.co.us .
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URL to article: http://www.berthoudrecorder.com/2013/04/24/bears-are-out-be-bear-aware/
URLs in this post:
 Image: http://www.adfg.alaska.gov/index.cfm?adfg=blackbear.main
 http://wildlife.state.co.us/WildlifeSpecies/LivingWithWildlife/Pages/LivingWith.aspx: http://wildlife.state.co.us/WildlifeSpecies/LivingWithWildlife/Pages/LivingWith.aspx
 http://wildlife.state.co.us/NewsMedia/PressReleases: http://wildlife.state.co.us/NewsMedia/PressReleases/Pages/index.aspx
 http://wildlife.state.co.us: http://wildlife.state.co.us/
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