In light of bear sighting, remember safety guidelines


ALAMOSA — Alamosa Police Department received reports of a bear seen in the area of the river dike and Fourth St., between Alamosa Ave. and La Veta Ave. Tuesday night, and Colorado Parks & Wildlife Officer James Romero said he received one call about a bear in the area of Lincoln Street.

Romero said his understanding was that the bear was just moving through the area and not causing any threat to area residents. If a bear is posing a danger or threat, Parks & Wildlife will respond and address the problem, he added.

He reminded the public of these simple precautions provided by Parks & Wildlife:

  • Keep garbage in a well-secured location;
  • Only put out garbage on the morning of pickup.
  • Clean garbage cans regularly to keep them odor free.
  • Use a bear-resistant trash can or dumpster.
  • If you don't have secure storage, put items that might become smelly into the freezer until trash day.
  • Don't leave pet food or stock feed outside.
  • Bird feeders are a major source of bear/human conflicts. Attract birds naturally with flowers and water baths. Do not hang bird feeders from April 15 to Nov. 15.
  • If you must have bird feeders: clean up beneath them every day, bring them in at night, and hang them high so that they're completely inaccessible to bears.
  • Do not attract other wildlife by feeding them, such as deer, turkeys or small mammals.
  • Don’t allow bears to become comfortable around your house. If you see one, yell at them, throw things at them, and make noise to scare them off.
  • Secure compost piles. Bears are attracted to the scent of rotting food -- and they'll eat anything.
  • Bears have good memories and will return to places they’ve found food.
  • Allow grills to burn for a couple of minutes after cooking to burn off grease and to eliminate odors. Clean the grill after each use.
  • Clean up thoroughly after picnics in the yard or on the deck. Don't allow food odors to linger.
  • If you have fruit trees, pick fruit before it gets too ripe. Don't allow fruit to rot on the ground.
  • Keep garage doors closed.
  • Lock your doors when you’re away from home and at night.
  • Keep the bottom floor windows of your house closed when you're not at home.
  • Do not keep food in your vehicle; roll up windows and lock the doors of your vehicles.
  • When car-camping, secure all food and coolers in a locked vehicle after you’ve eaten.
  • Keep a clean camp, whether you’re in a campground or in the back-country.
  • When camping in the back-country, hang food 100 feet or more from campsite; don’t bring any food into your tent
  • Cook food well away from your tent; wash dishes thoroughly.
  • Talk to your neighbors and kids about being bear aware.
  • If you keep small livestock, keep animals in a fully covered enclosure that is electrified. Don’t stock store food outside, keep enclosures clean to minimize odors, hang rags soaked in ammonia and/or Pine-Sol around the enclosure.
  • If you have bee hives, install electric fencing where allowed.

For more information go to the Living with Wildlife section on the Colorado Parks and Wildlife web site: cpw.state.co.us.

Residents who are concerned that a bear poses a threat may contact Parks & Wildlife at 719-587-6900 or the Alamosa Police Department through dispatch at 719-589-5807.

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