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User Name Thread Name Subject Posted
GUEST,Stilly River Sage BS: Livin' with Black Bears Question.... (255* d) RE: BS: Livin' with Black Bears Question.... 08 May 05


I didn't notice anyone mentioning compost here so far. You won't be able to do a regular compost pile for the same reason you have to lock up your trash. In some parks I've worked in they've had luck suspending heavy garbage cans on a steel posts (only a few inches off of the ground, but evidently they can't flip it over to stick their heads in. The top also clamps on. Others have a heavy bin like at the post office--you can't reach in to pick out anything. I see others on the market. Another one.

Several organizations and states have good information about living around bears: Humane Society, U.S. Forest Service, Colorado, Maryland, Washington, Montana. In fact, there are many pages available if you search on "living with black bears." You're not alone.

You don't need to give up your lifestyle, but you will need to modify it. Look into red wiggler worm composting, for example.

Bobert, I think you'll find the benefits of living in an area like this far outweigh the inconvenience of having bears come checking out the food possibilities. Keep your garden in the open so they can't sneak in and out, and the electric wire around it might also be a good idea. (Heck, bears aren't the only problems gardens face. I need to put up a wire fence around mine to keep our new pooch from strolling through the onions).

Here's a note I came across from Rainier National Park:

    Vol. V September 12th, 1927 Summer Season No. 11



    The men who "police" the Paradise Auto Camp are searching for a bear-proof garbage can although, at the same time, they are doubtful if there is any such thing.

    Every day the garbage cans are raided by the bears and on days when they are full it means double work for the caretakers. One man told me that he set-up a particular can three times within an hour. The can was over, the contents broadcast. He set it up. Before he was out of sight he heard a noise and found a bear had stepped from the shrubbery and was in the can. Again he set the can up and drove the bear away. A half hour later he returned that way and the can was down again.

    Several experiments have been tried. Piece of metal piping were driven through the handles and into the ground. The bear lifted the can from the stakes. A frame of heavy timbers well staked down was constructed about another can. The bear failed to turn it over but he removed the lid and pawed the contents over the top. We suggested a can with a spring cover but it would have to be strongly constructed or the bears would maul it into scrap iron.

This problem has been around a lot longer than 78 years, but considering all of the innovations in the world over that time, you'd think a fool-proof bear-proof can would have been developed. Good luck in finding the one that fools your bears!


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