Thursday, May 21, 2009

Do Not Feed The Animals
Most bear humans encounters occur because humans are careless about food.

No national numbers of conflicts were presented at the Nevada workshop, but participants said the number is growing. They said more regulations requiring bear-proof trash containers and improved public education of people living in bear-prone areas is needed to avoid potentially deadly encounters.

In the East, more than 70% of jurisdictions are reporting an increase in black bear populations, said Hank Hristienko, a big-game biologist for the Canadian province of Manitoba. And from Florida to New Hampshire and into Canada, there are increasing problems, he said.

"On almost 80% of the eastern part of the continent, you have an increasing trend of human-bear conflicts," he said.[...]

Bottom line: "People need to lock up their trash," said Carl Lackey, a Nevada Department of Wildlife biologist. "People really don't take notice until a bear is knocking on their front door."

Bears do not always knock on your door. When I lives in Truckee, CA, I had a bear come through the screen door. No knocking just ripping and tearing. Not really much of an impediment to a full grown bear. Let me tell you, a bear looks a whole lot bigger when your cooking breakfast in your boxers and it is less than five feet from you.

And then there is this idiot, feeding bears in the Alaskan wilderness.

ANCHORAGE, Alaska — After 20 years of enticing bears into a remote compound tucked away in a little visited corner of Alaska’s Yentna River valley, retired Anchorage school teacher Charlie Vandergaw said last fall he was ready to end his bear-taming shenanigans.

Filmmaker Richard Terry, the man to whom Vandergaw made the statement, didn’t know whether to believe it or not.

Now skeptical state officials have taken action to make sure it happens. They have charged the 70-year-old Vandergaw with 20 counts of illegally feeding game. Two friends accused of assisting him were also charged.

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