Are you 'bear aware'? Colorado Parks and Wildlife sharing reminders with homeowners

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. -- After a bear was hunted down and killed by Colorado Parks and Wildlife, officials continue to tell people how to live bear aware to avoid any similar situations.

"You are living in nature you are sharing their existence. We invited ourselves to be in their woods," said Steven Anderson, who lives in the Broadmoor Bluffs Area. "Over the [last] 20 years we've seen no less than 20 bears, does, some new offspring and mountain lions."

Bear sightings are common in western Colorado Springs, especially in recent weeks. It's how you protect your home that can save the bears, officials said.

"The general advice is to make sure that trash containers are either in a locked container or store in a locked building until morning of pick up. Windows and doors should be locked, garages should be closed, bird feeders should be brought in," said Frank McGee Wildlife Area Manager with Colorado Parks and Wildlife.

Officials also recommend cleaning your grill after every use and burning off the scent - hat way bears aren't attracted to your backyard barbecue spot.

"The main thing is trying to prevent bear from being rewarded for being around people," said McGee.

"I have a lot of fruit trees," said Anderson.  "I know that bear love fruit. I put mouse traps out to scare the young cubs."

Colorado Springs Waste Systems even offers customers a bear resistant trash can that can deter bears.

They said it's only $5 extra per month for the bear resistant trashcan and it can be a great deterrent for bears.

Below is the full list of tips to bear-proof a home.

  1. Don't feed birds while bears are active. Attract birds with water feeders, plantings and nest boxes instead.
  2. Store garbage in bear-resistant containers, enclosures or buildings.
  3. Put trash out the morning of pick up, not the night before.
  4. Keep bear-accessible windows and doors closed and locked at night.
  5. Keep garage doors closed. Lock the door between the house and the garage.
  6. Don't leave anything inside your vehicle that could attract a bear. That includes sun tan lotion, hand crème and air fresheners, along with empty food wrappers and packaging.
  7. Don't leave pet food or empty pet food dishes outside. Store pet food in a secure enclosure.
  8. Put chickens and small livestock in a secure pen at night or electric fence their enclosure.
  9. Pick fruit and produce as soon as, or just before, it ripens.
  10. Unwelcome mats and electric fencing are proven ways to keep bears out.

>> Click here to see more tips.

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