Vt. wildlife officials say it's time to bring in bird feeders to avoid bears

Published: Apr. 1, 2020 at 5:59 AM EDT
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Vermont officials are reminding the public that it's time to take down bird feeders.

Biologists with Vermont Fish and Wildlife say spring weather and melting snow cause bears to come out searching for food.

“Apples, beechnuts, acorns and berries were mostly plentiful last fall, enabling bears to enter their winter dens in good condition,” said Forrest Hammond, Vermont’s bear biologist. “But our recent warmer temperatures will stimulate them to emerge and seek any food sources they can smell.”

Officials say bringing in feeders at night doesn't work because bears will still come for the feed that spilled onto the ground.

Feeding a bear on purpose is bad for them and illegal.

Fish and Wildlife also offers the following tips to avoid bear problems: 

Keep chickens and honeybees secure within an electric fence or other bear-proof enclosure.

Never feed bears, deliberately or accidentally.

Feed your pets indoors.

If you compost learn to do it without causing odors that attract wildlife.

Store trash in a secure place.  Trash cans alone are not enough.