Protecting Black Bears
What Are the Benefits of Black Bears?
- They disperse seeds across vast distances—even more seeds than birds.
- Bears open up forest canopies that allows sun to filter to the forest floor, which creates greater biological diversity.
- Bears break logs while grubbing, which helps the decomposition process and facilitates the return of nutrients to the soil.
Preventing Conflicts With Bears
If you do encounter a bear, remain calm and remember that the bear is likely more scared of you than you are of him. Attacks by black bears on people are very rare and most black bears can be easily scared away with the following approach:
- Stand and face the bear directly. Never run away from or approach him.
- Make yourself look as big as possible by spreading your arms or, better yet, a coat.
- Make as much noise as possible by yelling, banging pots and pans or using other noisemaking devices.
- If the bear approaches and you have bear spray, spray the bear as he approaches.
- In the very rare case that a black bear does attack you, fight back (don’t play dead).
- After the bear leaves, remove whatever attracted him to the location (barbecue grill, bird feeder, pet food or garbage).
Note: these directions are specific for black bears.
What Is a Spirit Bear?
Become an Animal Defender
Living Peacefully with Wildlife
Coyote Protection in Canada
Coyotes are a native part of North American ecosystems and play an important ecological role.