Shortly before noon on Sunday morning Don Stevens saw a small bear, about 100 pounds, playing with his bird feeder. His home is on Bacon Road, not very far north of the Charlotte town line.
Although the bear bent the rod holding the feeder, it didn’t destroy anything. “I think he respected that we are both a part of the Bear Clan,” said Stevens, who is Chief of the Nulhegan Band of the Coosuk – Abenaki Nation.
Sgt. Josh Flore of the Shelburne Police reported the department had received multiple reports of a bear in Hullcrest Road–Hedgerow Drive neighborhood north of Shelburne near the Country Christmas Loft on Tuesday.
Fore sent a timely reminder that people often encourage bears and other wildlife into populated areas by providing easy access to food without realizing it. When these animals become used to these food sources and humans, they become more dependent on human foods and less wary.
The most common sources of food that attract bears are pet food, bird feeders, barbecue grills, household trash and the like.
In his release, Flore asked for people to “take these reasonable measures” to protect their property from bears:
- Never feed bears, deliberately or accidentally.
- Feed your pets indoors.
- Only feed birds from December to March.
- Store trash in a secure place. Trash cans alone are not enough.
Bears are wild animals that should be treated with respect and appreciated from a distance. For your safety, please keep yourselves and pets away from bears and other wild animals.
Flore included these tips if you do encounter a bear:
- Remain calm and ensure the bear has an escape route.
- Do not approach or try to feed the bear.
- If possible, back away or go inside.
- Do not run from a bear.
- Do not climb trees to escape a bear.