The Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department has been getting reports of bears getting into trash containers, bird feeders, bee hives and chicken houses. To protect the public and the animals, they are urging residents to avoid attracting hungry bears this spring by removing or securing potential food sources. The department recommends keeping chickens and honeybees within an electric fence or other bear-proof enclosure, feeding pets indoors, not feeding birds between April 1 and Nov. 30 and storing trash in a secure place.
The state’s bear biologist says once a bear becomes used to a food source and human contact, it is nearly impossible to relocate the animal. It frequently has to be put down.
Vermont has one of the densest black bear populations in the country, approximately one bear for every three square miles, most commonly found in the Green Mountains and Northeast Kingdom.