Living in bear country

Bear safety information for agricultural producers, hunters, fire lookout and industrial workers, and residents.


Most bear encounters can be prevented. Learn how to avoid bear encounters and how to react if you find yourself in an unavoidable encounter with a bear.

Bears are clever, curious and live to eat – they are in constant search for new food sources. Once they have discovered a new food source it is extremely difficult to keep them from returning to it. To prevent problems from starting, never leave any kind of food for the bear to find.

Bears have an excellent sense of smell – managing the smells of potential bear food – including human and pet foods, garbage, grains and harvested animals – is an essential part of preventing problems with bears. When in bear territory, keep food and garbage in airtight containers, and store anything that may have the smell of food or garbage away from humans, and out of the reach of bears.