BearWise #6

Alert Neighbors to Bear Activity

See bears in the area or evidence of bear activity? Tell your neighbors and share information on how to avoid conflicts with bears. Bears have adapted to living near people; now it’s up to us to adapt to living near bears.

Don’t give a “traveling” bear an excuse to linger in your neighborhood!

Black bears live in the forests of the Southeastern U.S., and may travel across roads and through rural areas to find their natural foods in another forest area. You may be more likely to see them around your house during years when their natural foods are less available.

However, when bears start hanging out around homes, both residents and bears face problems. Once a bear spends more of its time in a neighborhood, its chances of survival drop.

bear safety - bear on the porch

Bears hanging around homes are

…More exposed to vehicle strikes; and
…Apt to be shot or trapped, legally or illegally; or
…May be removed by agencies to protect public safety

bear in window
This black has learn from other neighbors that homes can sources of food. (Photo: VDGIF)
black bear in the garbage

Is your property BearWise?

When people intentionally or unintentionally feed bears, it can become a community-wide problem. You or your neighbors may be encouraging bears to hang around your area, which may affect you and your family.

  • First, make sure your property is BearWise:
  • Let your neighbors know when bears are hanging around, and what you think might be attracting them.
  • Check with your state wildlife agency about when and how to report problem bear activity.

bear running in neighborhood

Sometimes bears are just traveling through

Seeing a black bear is a thrilling and rewarding experience.
The presence of bears is not necessarily a problem or a threat to your safety.