With snow dusting the mountain tops and temperatures dipping down to the single digits, the chill in the air is signifying winter is just around the corner.
Over the past couple of months a shift happened in the bear world as they moved into hyperphagia. What is that you ask? Hyperphagia is an increase in feeding activity driven by a biological need to fatten up before bears go in to den for the winter. Once they enter the den bears incredibly go without food and water for months. If they do not get enough to eat in the fall, mothers don’t produce cubs and some bears die in the den.
What does that mean for us humans?
Well, what would YOU do if you knew you were preparing for a very long fast and you could die if not prepared? You would likely be gorging on all you could get your hands on – and going to some pretty extreme measures to do do!
The same is true for bears. They feed upwards to 20 hours a day to prepare for this amazing event. So that means as humans we need to take every precaution to help prevent and reduce human-bear conflict. Store your bear attractants in a bear-smart and bear-proof manner. Don’t invite bears into your house. Keep doors and windows closed and locked – especially at night and when you are out.