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Plans underway to trap bears seen in east Ferndale

FERNDALE, Wash. — Residents in Ferndale neighborhoods east of I-5 between W Smith and W Axton Roads report sightings of what appears to be a female black bear with 2 cubs.

Officials with the Washington State Department of Fish and Wildlife confirmed they have received a report of bears in the area and regional officers are currently planning to make attempts to trap the animals.

There have been no human-bear conflicts or depredations reported in the area. Unfortunately, once bears know about a non-natural food source they keep coming back and can lose their fear of humans. The most important action we can take is to remove food and other bear attractants. Whether relocation or lethal removal, removing the bear is not a long-term solution — if there’s food available other black bears will show up.

Some people are tempted to feed bears they find in their backyard or allow them to forage on their lawn or landscaping, thinking they are helping the bears. The truth is, feeding wildlife can cause more harm than good. Never attempt to provide food for black bears or allow them to be comfortable around people — this can lead to problems for both bears and people down the line (not to mention, it’s against the law).

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Bears are naturally wary of humans but can overcome their fear when people reward them (intentionally or unintentionally!) with high-calorie food sources. Did you know they can smell food from over a mile away? With both temperatures and bear activity increasing, we’re asking for your help to secure unnatural food sources and reduce potential bear encounters.

Please take a moment to survey the outside of your home and remove common black bear attractants. Follow these tips to prevent attracting bears to your home and to avoid negative bear interactions this spring:

· Never intentionally feed bears or other backyard wildlife.

· Always keep garbage cans in a garage or a sturdy building until collection day.

· Take down seed, suet, and hummingbird feeders until late fall.

· Clean up fallen fruit or other possible attractants around your home.

· Remove pet food from wildlife-accessible areas and feed your pets inside.

· Thoroughly clean barbecue grills after each use and store them in a secure building.

· Cage and electric fence your domestic fowl and livestock pens.

· Avoid storing food in your car.

· If you see a bear on your property, please clap your hands loudly and shoo it away.

Dial 911 to report emergency predatory wildlife incidents.

For non-emergency poaching or violation reporting, or non-emergency predatory wildlife incidents, call 877-933-9847, or submit an online report. You can also text tips to 847411 (TIP411). Washington State Department of Fish and Wildlife (August 31, 2023)

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