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DNR reminds the public: Don't feed the bears

Bear cub via Peter Prehn, Flickr.jpg
Bear cub via Peter Prehn, Flickr.jpg

The black bear is an iconic symbol of Minnesota's wilderness. Most bears are wary of people and will usually leave when encountered. Seeing a bear can be a memorable experience, but conflicts can sometimes occur when bears wander into our neighborhoods.

A bear will take advantage of any foods available and will attempt to eat anything that resembles food in look, smell or taste. When natural foods such as nuts, meat berries, insects and tender vegetation are scarce, bears search actively for anything to eat. This is when bears most often come in contact with people. When bears find a source of food they will usually return regularly.

Bears can become a nuisance when they visit homes, resorts, campgrounds and restaurants. Although some bears become used to people, they are still wild animals no matter how "tame" they may appear. People must always be cautious around bears since they may react unpredictably.

Rhonda Silence speaks with Minnesota Department of Natural Resources Conservation Officer Darin Fagerman, who says the best way to avoid bear problems is to not attract them in the first place. Here’s more: