Are Black Bears Coming To A Backyard Near You?
We thought it was totally appropriate to start off a story about bears and mention an article that we did some time ago entitled ‘Don’t Mess With Brother Bear.’ In that article we mentioned several tips-among them was “never go into the backcountry, hiking, camping, fishing or hunting without an effective EPA approved bear deterrent spray. When getting one, only get a bear spray that is EPA approved. The EPA prescribes the minimum amounts of spray in a can-a little over 9 ounces. Look for a spray that empties the canister in five or six seconds. Get a bear spray with the longest range possible.”
In today’s article we are talking about bear stories that are making the news today to heighten your awareness about them as they come out of hibernation.
The first story is about Bears In Your Backyard which seems to be a common occurrence in Massachusetts. Black bears are commonly seen in residential areas sifting through trash barrels and bird feeders looking for food. A bear’s greatest attribute is its sense of smell which makes them very good hunters and gatherers and often leads them to areas that are not bear friendly such as neighborhoods. Many people feed birds because they like seeing them in their backyard though, as many biologists point out, birds do not need to be fed. Bears will show up to get scraps from a bird feeder or dog food dish.
From the Canadian Broadcasting Company (CBC) news service comes a story about Risky Behavior being a major factor in the growing number of attacks on people by bears and other large carnivores. Examples of that risky behavior include parents leaving children unattended; walking an unleashed dog; doing outdoor activities at twilight; and especially approaching a female with her cubs nearby. University of Calgary wildlife expert Stephen Herrero said “that a lot of what people do is based on a total lack of knowledge about what is dangerous and what isn’t.” He said attacks on people could be reduced if they were more aware of their surroundings.
In a separate story by the CBC they give us five ways to avoid a bear attack.
- “Remain calm and make casual conversation
Do not run. Stand still and talk to the bear in a calm voice.
Arm your pepper spray
… but don’t use it just yet
Wait for the bear to leave.
If the bear gets closer, slowly back away while talking in a quiet, monotone voice. No screaming, or eye contact.
If the bear doesn’t leave, be persuasive:
Make sure the bear has a clear escape route. Now is the time to yell, make yourself look bigger, wave your arms, throw objects, jingle your bear bells, blow your air horn.
Bear still there, and getting closer?
Time to use your pepper spray if the bear is within 7 metres.”
This story is about a bear that was let loose in a Turkish city and went on a rampage in city streets and started attacking local residents. One man was attacked and dragged to the ground before police, with the help of animal experts, were able to sedate the bear with a tranquilizer gun. Details are unknown.
In Morris Township, New Jersey a bear tipped over beehives on successive nights. The homeowner finally realized it was time to move his hives before the bear made a habit of coming back. Another homeowner lost all five of his beehives to a bear the previous week. Police were able to shoot it with rubber buckshot to deter it from returning.
Every year around springtime bears around the country are waking up from a long winter’s nap and are coming out of hibernation. And man, oh man, are they hungry! They will do just about anything to get at food which they can smell from as much as three or four miles away. Unsealed trash cans, birdfeeders and dog food dishes are all likely targets for the hungry carnivores. Take the necessary precautions around the outside of your house and arm yourself with our most popular and most effective bear pepper spray shown here. This 260 gram container empties in 5.4 seconds and has a range of 35 feet setting the standard for bear sprays.
Have you seen bears in your neighborhood or your backyard? What precautions do you take to protect yourself and your family? It’s okay to tell us your secrets, we won’t share them with the bears.