Thursday, June 28, 2018

Black Bear Information for Town Residents

Information sent to the Selectmen's Office by:
Mac Schmalz, Bear Specialist USDA
APHIS Wildlife Services
59 Chennell Drive, Suite 7, Concord, NH 03301 - (603) 223-7786

Our office (USDA Wildlife Services) works closely with the NH Fish and Game Department to mitigate human-bear conflicts throughout the state. We are reaching out to towns in NH in the hopes that we can get some information about black bears and mitigating bear concerns on town website and Facebook pages.

Prime black bear habitat includes deciduous forests (oaks, maple, beech etc.), wetlands, and riparian (along rivers) zones. The natural areas surrounding your town provide very good habitat for black bears. Many human-bear conflicts arise when bears frequent properties to access food attractants that are found around homes. The most common attractants are birdfeeders, unsecured garbage, and compost piles which include food scraps. Livestock, such as chickens and pigs, can also attract bears when not properly protected. Electric fencing is the most effective way to protect livestock. In most cases removing the attractant the bear(s) are utilizing eliminates the bear problem. It is also helpful to harass bears with noise, such as banging pots and pans, or using compressed air horns to scare them away.

Helpful links: 
Bears and unprotected chickens:
Why you should not keep your bird feeder up past April 1: 
Example of a bear-proof dumpster:
Example of a non-bear-proof dumpster: 

Thank you for your consideration.