Aug 28 2012

Fall means more Cuchara bear sightings

Published by at 7:12 pm under General Information

cuchara bear   Cooler mornings are a reminder of  more bear foraging. They will soon begin their annual food binge throughout the Cuchara Valley as they prepare for hibernation. According to our DOW office, the biological drive to fatten up before winter is known as hyperphagia – a period when a bear’s appetite increases dramatically. During this time, a bear’s food intake increases from approximately 8,000 to nearly 20,000 calories. The urge to satisfy this enormous appetite can make them more likely to venture into populated areas like La Veta and Cuchara.

The most serious problems occur when people provide easy meals to bears including: trash, pet food, bird feeders, greasy barbecue grills and ripe fruit left on trees or on the ground. In some communities, a few bears have learned to find food in kitchen pantries and refrigerators, often breaking into homes through windows or doors left unlocked or open, despite repeated warnings from wildlife officers.
Despite worrisome interactions between humans and bears prompted by careless food or trash handling each year, wildlife officials remind the public that simply seeing a bear near your home is not always a reason for concern. It may just be passing through on its search for food.

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