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News | March 30, 2018

Bears and Bird Feeders

By JBER Natural Resources Staff and Conservation Law Enforcement Office 673d CES/CEIEC

It’s time to take down your bird feeders and clean up trash around your home and neighborhood. With all the sunshine and warmth starting to melt the snow, bears are starting to emerge from dens. It’s time to remember to be “bear aware”.

Please take the time this weekend to remove your bird feeders for the season and clean up around your homes. During the spring, food is still scare which makes human-provided attractants appealing.

Bears are particularly attracted to suet and oily sunflowers often found in Alaskan bird feeders. Remember, feeding wildlife, even unintentionally, is illegal and can result in fines.

Your actions will help reduce wildlife conflict in your neighborhood and perhaps save you the cost of a citation for negligent feeding of wildlife (5AAC 92.230).

To help prevent bear problems on JBER, below are some reminders provided by the Alaska Department of Fish and Game:

• Garbage – Store trash inside buildings or in bear-proof containers; keep secured until the day of scheduled pickup. Encourage neighbors to do the same.

• Barbecues – Clean barbecue grills, especially grease traps, after each use.

• Pets – Feed pets indoors or clean up excess and spilled food between meals. Store pet food, livestock food, and birdseed indoors or in bear-resistant containers.

• Bird Feeders – Take feeders down April through October, store out of bears’ reach and remove spilled seed.

• Freezers – Keep freezers locked in a secure building or otherwise out of bears’ reach.

• Gardens – Plant gardens in the open, away from cover and game trails. Only compost raw vegetable matter and turn over compost frequently.

If you observe bears directly among housing areas, around trash containers or displaying aggressive behavior, please contact JBER Conservation Law Enforcement at 552-8609/9453 or Security Forces. Bears merely transiting from one area to another should be observed from afar and allowed to go about their business.

Thank you from your JBER 673d CES/CEIEC Natural Resources Staff and Conservation Law Enforcement Officers.

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