Black bears are big, beautiful creatures that are naturally curious, and for people that live in bear country, bear encounters are common. For those that have been searching on how to keep bears away from your house, here are some tips that you can integrate into your life to keep some distance between the bears and yourselves.
There are literally millions of Americans that live in small towns and rural areas where bears roam quite freely. Although they are thrilling to see in the wild, they are far less charming when they are rummaging through your garbage or in your backyard raiding for food. Ensuring that bears stay away from your personal property is more common sense than anything else. Here are some guidelines to keep your place bear-free:
Eliminate Enticing Odors
Black Bears have very strong noses that can pick up scents from several hundred feet away. The first way to fend off bears from your property is to make sure the food you throw out doesn’t produce a scent that they will love to investigate.
Bird feeders should be cleaned regularly or you will definitely have bears trying to check it out. Take hummingbird feeders inside the house once it gets dark.
Black Bears will also eat your dog’s food too, so bring their food inside as well as their bowls so they won’t produce a smell that entices them towards your house.
Garbage cans should be placed outside only a short time before pickup time. The garbage should be bear-resistant, meaning that it reduces odors, and is placed inside a trash container. Make a schedule to regularly sanitize and deodorize all cans with bleach to take away the odors.
If you love grilling, be good about never leaving food outside unattended. Also, when you finish grilling, clean and de-grease the deck and also clear out the shed or garage when not in use.
Remember not to add pungent items like melon rinds, meat, or foods with a sweet smell to the compost pile. Add lime to reduce the smells and add bleach when in doubt to squelch the smell.
Fruits trees are known for creating a nice aroma that bears are attracted to, so be sure to harvest them once they are ripe, picking up fruit that falls regularly. If you have beehives, consider bear deterrents like electric fences to keep bears away.
It’s not just food that can attract bears. They also are attracted to other sweet smells like insect repellent, suntan lotion or scented items like candles and soap. Remove these if they are outside when they are not being used.
When You’re Away
When you leave your home for long intervals, you should be extra clean, cleaning out shelves, freezers, pantries, and fridges. Additionally, you should remove any trash that is outside, use heavy shutters on your windows, and remove any pet food in your garage.
The better prepared you are for a bear raiding your property, the more safe you will fee. However, even with all the precautions, you may have a bear encounter and it is best to be prepared with pepper spray. Know the difference between a grizzly bears and a black bears and remember that knowledge is power.