Backyard Chirper

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Beware of Hungry Bears at Bird Feeders

Spring is a wonderful time to put up your feeders and attract an array of fun species… well, for most people.

Even though the vast majority of people in the U.S. can happily and safely put up their bird feeders without worry, there’s a small portion of bird lovers who simply can’t enjoy the birds a feeder can bring to their yard.

Here’s why:

If you live in bear country, having your feeder up can be a hazard not only for you but for your whole neighborhood. Bears can get pretty desperate, thanks to limited resources, and they will do whatever it takes to get some food, even raid bird feeders.

These bears in New Jersey were just trying to get the seed from the feeders and didn’t cause any harm (except, of course, to the feeders), but last week, a woman in Florida was actually attacked by a bear. This wasn’t directly related to bird feeders, but the bears were seen rummaging around trash cans and tearing down feeders earlier.

Unless you live in bear country, this isn’t something you should worry about. New Jersey has a fairly large black bear population, as does parts of Florida. Places like Vermont and New Hampshire also consistently recommends residents take down bird feeders every year.

If want to keep your feeders up but are a little worried about bears, you can do a number of things to make your feeder unattractive or unreachable to bears. Find out more here.

Timothy Martinez Jr. is a writer and freelance journalist. His work has been published in The Times-Picayune in New Orleans, Remapping Debate in New York City and other publications. He’s been a bird lover since he was young and currently lives in New Orleans, L.A.