Tips to limit bear encounter risks
USDA FOREST SERVICE NEWS RELEASE
Bears have been reported at numerous campsites across the Allegheny National Forest. Dispersed campsites along Forest Road 259 and Forest Road 160 have had increased bear activity, with bears entering campsites, taking food, and damaging property.
Bears are always searching for food. They are intelligent animals and have great memories. Most bears are wary of humans and will try to avoid them, but bears can also learn to associate people with food. When bears associate people with food, they can lose their natural fear of humans and even enter sites when people are present.
These interactions are not only dangerous for people, but for the bears as well. When bears continue to pose an active threat to people, they will be trapped and relocated or possibly euthanized.
We encourage people who plan to camp in the national forest to follow these guidelines to limit their risk of bear encounters:
· Do not feed wildlife.
· Keep a clean camp site.
· Do not store food or any scented items in a tent.
· Do not leave food unattended at a campsite.
· Use bear-resistant food storage containers or hang food in a bear bag.
· Do not store garbage at your camp site. Use a designated dumpster.
· At an undeveloped camping location, cook and store food away from your sleeping area.
Remember: You are responsible for your own safety and for the safety of those around you.
For more information on bear safety, please visit https://www.fs.usda.gov/visit/know-before-you-go/bears. You may also contact any of the Forest Service offices to report bear activity.
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