Letter To The Editor: Black Bear Safety … The Bear Facts

By KHALIL J. SPENCER
Los Alamos

Fr. Glenn Jones wishes that “…someone catches and transports these bears hanging around town…” (letter). I sympathize with Fr. Jones in looking after the safety of his flock. The problem is that Los Alamos is a rural, mountainous town and is naturally black bear habitat. Removing a bear or three will not remove the fact that we share our county with wildlife, bears and other large animals included.

Thankfully, black bears are rarely aggressive towards humans. The recent attack in the mountains resulted from a runner surprising a mother with cub. There is plenty out on the web as far as bear safety, such as these examples:

http://westernwildlife.org/black-bear-outreach-project/black-bear-safety/
http://www.wildlife.state.nm.us/download/publications/wildlife/Black-Bears-of-New-Mexico.pdf

Folks new to the area would be wise to read up on how to deal with wildlife before encountering same.

Further, it appears the bear in the picture was trying to get into a garbage dumpster. It would be wise that dumpsters containing food refuse, especially those near canyons, be bear-proof examples, so as not to encourage bears with free food.

And, lets all be careful out there.

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