Spring has sprung and black bears are on the move. The DEC is asking for our help in reducing human-bear conflicts and nuisance reports by taking these simple steps.

Adirondack and Northern New York black bears are on the move. The State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) has been notified of nuisance bears and want to remind homeowners of steps they can take to avoid conflicts with bears.

When reported immediately, nuisance bear issues can often be resolved by working with community members to increase public awareness and remove attractants. When nuisance bears go unreported, they may quickly become a significant safety hazard for people and pets, and such scenarios often have undesirable outcomes for both individuals and bears.

  1. Never feed bears! It is illegal, dangerous and detrimental to bears.
  2. If you believe bears are being fed in your area, or suspect a nuisance bear situation, report it to DEC immediately.
  3. Take down bird feeders after April 1. Birds do not need supplemental food in the spring and summer when natural foods are most abundant (even if you believe your birdfeeder to be inaccessible to bears, the birds will drop seed on the ground, which attracts bears to your yard).
  4. Clean off barbeque grills before nightfall (don't forget the grease trap), and if possible, store grills inside when not in use.
  5. Store garbage in a secure building or location, secure can lids with ropes/bungees/chains, never over-fill cans, and dispose of garbage as frequently as possible.
  6. If you live in an area where bears may occur, put garbage containers out by the curb just before the scheduled pick-up - never the night before.
  7. If you live in a densely populated bear area, consider using a certified bear-resistant garbage container.
  8. Clean garbage cans frequently with ammonia products.
  9. Do not burn garbage: it is illegal and can attract bears.
  10. Do not add meat scraps, bones or melon rinds to your compost pile.
  11. Feed pets indoors and store pet food indoors. If pets must be fed outside, immediately remove all uneaten food and dishes.

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