Drought Conditions Cause Bear Complaints To Rise In Upstate NY
Its been a really dry summer with blueberries, raspberries, blackberries and other things consumed by bears in the wild are in short supply. As a result, the bears are more likely to seek food from human sources and are appearing more frequently at campsites or around homes and yards. They are even raiding bird feeders, garbage cans, and pet food dishes left outside.
"We are on track to have one of our higher complaint years involving bears," said Jeremy Hurst, the DEC's big game biologist. According to the DEC, there are an estimated 6,000 to 8,000 black bears in NewYork State, a number that has grown over the past decade.
DEC staff classify nuisance complaints in two categories: Class I (bears that break into homes and vehicles) and Class II (bears that hang around areas where humans are and are less responsive to being scared away). To date, the DEC staff have had to kill "several" bears for Class I situations in both the Adirondacks and Catskills.
If you're planning to go camping remember bear-resistant containers in the Adirondacks are required for all overnight stayers in the Eastern High Peaks of the Adirondacks. This law has been in place for the last 10 years or so and it is critical that this law is followed to not only protect your food but to protect your family.