[Tweeters] Bears vs Feeders

hrudkaj mary hrudkajm at hotmail.com
Sat Oct 29 07:47:05 PDT 2005

I too had an encounter with a black bear that had demolished my feeders on
the deck, three times in one day. I used a bear aversion tactic that had
been shown on the evening news the night before, how timely. On the program
they used loud noises (ie: shotgun blasts, yelling and dogs barking) as well
as bear dogs to chase away the offending black bears. Not having a dog but
having a pistol and a really loud voice I awaited the bear's next visit.
About 6pm I noticed its large shadow on the deck while I was on the
computer. My initial thought was to get a photo but then reality set in and
reminded me that the bear was only 12 feet away with only a screen door
between us.

I slowly backed away from the screen door and retrieved my pistol. After
carefully opening the door (the bear was much more interested in the
birdseed than me) I stepped outside and fired one round into the air and
began yelling and waving my arms over my head. The bear headed downhill
from the house, crashing into the woods and through the brush.

The bear has not been back to the deck or feeders since that day three years
ago. He/She has been back to other parts of the yard, specifically the
feeding area and water I maintain for the mountain quail and other ground
feeders. I know of its visits by the large piles of semi-digested feces,
usually berries or apples, it leaves by the water dish.

So, those of you who have bear problems with feeders and live in an area
where discharging a firearm is not illegal or dangerous (neighbors, etc. too
close-by) might consider a similar tactic to keep away bears from your

In the meantime, the yellow-shafted flicker is still hanging about with at
least four other flickers (all red-shafted males, females and juveniles).
The usual cast of low-land birds are about, eating me out of house and home.
But they are quite fun to watch. Each day brings a new insight into bird
behaviour and a new delight me my psyche.

Happy birding.

Mary Hrudkaj
hrudkajm at hotmail.com
Belfair/N. Mason County

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