Learn about living with bears; creating bear smart communities; recreating in bear country; bear safety at work; and managing bears (for wildlife officials).

Bearsmart Blog

20 Bear Hacks

A Cheat Sheet for Getting Bear Smart

With bears emerging from their wintery dens all over North America, we wanted to give you an easy-to-reference cheat sheet of 20 bear smart practices to consider for life in bear country. Keeping bears away from human food sources gives our bears a chance at a long life. Unfortunately, far-too-often bears that have learned to seek food in peopled areas are killed by authorities.

Please save the life of a bear by sharing this cheat sheet to your friends & neighbors via email, Facebook, Twitter, or print it out and send it in the mail. Better yet, memorize this list and turn it into a singing telegram. (PS – If you opt for the last option, please send us video of you doing it).

Without further adieu..

1. Clean the grease tray out of your BBQ.

2. Store away your bird feeder during bear season.

3. Garbage should be secured inside or in a bear-proof bin until it can be disposed of properly.

4. Keep smelly items out of your car; empty coffee cups, deodorant sticks, and McDonalds wrappers attract bears.

5. DRIVING: Bear’s do not wear reflectors; be cautious while driving through bear country at night.

6. Use a telephoto lens when taking photos of bears.

7. Don’t cause a “bear jam” by stopping on roadways to watch bears.

8. Got backyard chickens? Use an electric fence to keep them safe.

9. Never approach a bear.

10. Never befriend a bear.

11. DRIVING: If you see a bear roadside, think, “Maybe there are cubs” and slow down to avoid collisions.

12. Don’t keep dog food outside.

13. AT HOME: Replace lever door handles with traditional doorknobs. They’re trickier for bear’s to operate.

14. Don’t leave your picnic cooler in the back of your truck.

15. Bears, like people, react to threats by evaluating their potential danger. Act responsibly.

16. Bears can pry open vehicles to access food; don’t tempt them.

17. RANCHERS & BEEKEEPERS: Consider best bear smart practices.

18. Teach your children about bears.

19. Follow @BearSmart on Twitter and on Instagram.

20. REMEMEBER: It’s possible to teach an old bear new tricks.