Bears have been making their way into residential areas because of lack of food in the wild and ease of getting it out of trash roll carts.
- Since garbage stored outside is the biggest attractant, storing garbage in a secure garage or shed until the morning of collection will virtually eliminate the chances of a bear visit*. If a bear does not find a food source, it will move on. Here are some safe practices for managing waste to minimize encounters with bears:
- Avoid luring bears on to your property by maintaining any fallen fruit; stock up for the winter and preserve fruit by canning or drying it.
- Strong and smelly odors will attract bears, so try to reduce odors by keeping smelly items out of the trash until trash pickup day.
- Clean your trash roll cart frequently.
- Request bear resistant locks to be installed on your trash roll carts. Call the Eco Station at 505.662.8163 or email email@example.com. (Locks must be unlatched for collection)
- County code requires trash to be set out for collection no earlier than 5 p.m. the day prior to collection, but to avoid attracting bears to your property, try to set out trash roll carts the morning of trash collection. Roll carts have to be placed out before 8 a.m.
- Hang bird feeders at least 10 feet above ground and away from buildings, including porches, and use a tray to catch spills. Discontinue feeding if a bear is in the area.*
- Feed pets inside or remove uneaten pet food between feedings.*
- Clean barbecues and store in a secure area.*
- Keep your family, neighbors, pets, and property safe: store your garbage in your garage or shed until the morning of your collection*
These are just a few safety tips to help minimize encounters with bears in residential areas.
Please notify New Mexico Department of Game and Fish immediately if you encounter a bear, or have any questions or concerns. They can be reached at 505.328.2572, or call dispatch at 505.827.9376.
REMEMBER, BEARS CAN’T CHANGE THEIR BEHAVIOR, ONLY HUMANS CAN.