THUNDER BAY – The Ministry of Natural Resources is reminding people that it is important to be “Bear Aware”. Spring is here and that means black bears are out of hibernation. At this time of year it’s important to take simple precautions to help prevent attracting black bears to your community.
The potential for human-bear conflicts increases when there is little natural food for bears. If this happens, black bears will search for other food sources, such as garbage and bird feed, which can attract bears to populated areas.
To minimize the chances of attracting black bears:
- Store garbage in waste containers with tight-fitting lids.
- Put out garbage only on the morning of pick-up.
- Put away bird feeders. Seed, suet and nectar put out for birds also attract bears.
- Clean outdoor grills after each use, including the grease trap underneath. Bears will be drawn by smells from great distances, including grease and food residue on grills.
People who have problems with bears can call the toll-free bear reporting line anytime at 1-866-514-2327. In a life-threatening emergency, call 911 or your local police.
Learn more about what you can do to keep bears out of your neighbourhood at ontario.ca/bearwise.
Since 2004, Ontario’s Bear Wise program has been educating people about bears, how to avoid attracting bears and how to prevent human-bear conflicts.
Bear Wise also supports local prevention programs and partnerships with police to respond to human-bear incidents.