Black Bear Sightings & Safety Tips

During the morning hours of June 25, 2015 a black bear was reported roaming in both the Greenfield Hill and Fairfield University areas of town. The mere presence of a bear does not necessitate its removal. In most cases, if left alone, the bear will make its way to a more natural habitat. Removing food attractants, such as bird feeders, reduces the chance that bears will go near homes. The DEP seldom relocates bears. An exception may be made to remove a bear in an urban location when there is little likelihood that it can leave safely on its own and when the bear is in a position where it can be safely immobilized.

According to the DEEP , Bears have been known to wander into heavily populated residential areas. The black bear is a stocky animal with short, thick legs. It is the smallest North American bear. In Connecticut, adult males, or boars, normally weigh from 150 to 450 pounds, while females, or sows, weigh from 110 to 250 pounds. Yearlings weigh 45 to 100 pounds. Adults are 5 to 6 feet long.

If you see a bear:

  • Enjoy it from a distance.
  • Advertise your presence by shouting and waving your arms or walk slowly away.
  • Never attempt to feed or attract bears.
  • Report bear sightings to the Wildlife Division, at (860) 675-8130.

BEARS NEAR YOUR HOME
Bears are attracted to the garbage, pet food, compost piles, fruit trees and bird-feeders around houses.

  • DO remove bird feeders and bird food from late March through November.
  • DO eliminate food attractants by placing garbage cans inside a garage or shed. Add ammonia to trash to make it unpalatable.
  • DO clean and store grills away after use.
  • DON'T intentionally feed bears. Bears that become accustomed to finding food near your home may become "problem" bears.
  • DON'T leave pet food outside overnight.
  • DON'T add meat or sweets to a compost pile.

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