The bears make their grand appearance every spring by turning over trash cans and spreading the garbage hither and yon.
God love ‘em.
We like the bears. We don’t care for their behavior, which has us outside picking up the neighbor’s garbage — whichever neighbor that might be; we have many. Knowing bears, the garbage might be from the next block.
We add to local officials’ pleas to secure trash cans and anything to which else that bears might be drawn.
Let’s not distract bears from their wild diet. Let them eat berries or fish or whatever else is their natural diet.
And let’s allow them to do it without getting in their way. We don’t want anyone injured, nor any property damaged if that can be prevented.
But bears are out and they have only a few months to eat and build up fat reserves for hibernation in late fall. It is illegal to feed bears, either purposely or by accident.
Yet, they are attracted to outdoor cooking. Let’s clean campsites and barbecue grills well in between meals. Also, keep pet food out of the reach of bears.
Campers and hikers should be careful to also store food where and in such a way that bears cannot get it, and to pack any unused food and move it from campsites. Food waste can be burned in a hot fire.
Bears also walk the streets and sidewalks around town. They’ve been known to show up in grocery stores and along tourist routes, particularly around Creek Street downtown when the stream is filled with fish.
It’s a thrill to see them. But, at the same time, they are wild animals that require wide berth. For the well-being of both bears and all other living creatures, let’s not do anything that can be avoided to attract them and let them be.
Let’s look, not feed.