Tuesday, June 8, 2010


Rubber Bullets for Bears, a tough love solution.


There is a saying in wildlife management circles, that goes like this:

“A fed bear is a dead bear”100_1940

There is a reason for those “don’t feed the Bears” signs. In the Rio Grande National Forest a Bear that has three negative contacts with campers will usually have to be destroyed.


Part of our job is to apply the rubber bullet tough love technique to separate the Bears from the campers and their food that hasn’t been properly put away from Bears.

Even though our campers receive the handout materials and the talk about bear country food storage procedures. There will be a few that are careless or that deliberately feed the Bears to attempt to photograph them.

Sadly, those people are likely guaranteeing the Bears demise, when it only is following it’s intense feeding drive, after a long Winter of hibernation.

At those times it is safer for the Campers, and the Bears, to apply the tough love technique. That forced separation may give the Choke Cherries a chance to ripen. Then the Bears no longer have a interest in any other food source.

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