Nuisance Bear Calls on the Increase

Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife reminds homeowners to remove potential bear attractants from their yards

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Winter is over and even the bears want to enjoy the better weather!

Recent bear sightings have sparked warnings from wildlife biologists and wardens in Maine.

They say after months of hibernation, bears are looking for food anywhere they can find it.

Experts recommend removing food sources, such as bird feeders, from backyards. They also recommend keeping garbage cans inside until the morning of trash pickup. Other tips -- keep your barbecue grill clean by burning off any food residue, disposing of wrappers and cleaning the grilling area after use. Pet and livestock food should be stored indoors, and any uneaten food should be cleaned up.

Already, the Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife has received over 40 nuisance bear complaints this spring, spread throughout the state.

Annually, the Department handles approximately 500 nuisance bear complaints, with May and June being the busiest months for complaints. In 2014, the department responded to over 700 complaints for the year. 

But, if you see a bear, don't panic. Experts say to keep your distance and call the Maine Warden Service.

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