EVERGREEN, Colo. (KDVR) — Bears are fattening up for winter by eating up to 20,000 calories each day right now.
Colorado Parks and Wildlife says bears have entered hyperphagia — the process when bears eat and drink nearly nonstop as they fatten up for hibernation.
One of those bears is living in Evergreen. Earlier this week around 10:45 p.m. a giant bear set off a Ring camera not far from Evergreen Lake.
You can watch the full video in the media player above.
“Bears have been active this year in a big way. Lucky for us he decided not to come in the house to say hello,” Todd Mitchem said.
Mitchem said that he almost took his dog outside without checking.
How to bearproof your home
Bear-proofing your home is not only important to your safety but also important for protecting bears.
“Simple changes in human behavior can reap big benefits. If people keep their trash and other potential food items, like birdseed and dog food, off-limits to bears, not only will they protect their homes and property from bear damage, but they’ll also protect bears,” National Wildlife Research Center wildlife biologist Dr. Stewart Breck said.
- Keep garbage in a well-secured location.
- Only put out garbage on the morning of pickup.
- Clean garbage cans regularly to keep them free of food odors: ammonia is effective.
- Use a bear-resistant trash can or dumpster.
- Don’t leave pet food or stock feed outside.
- Bird feeders are a major source of bear/human conflicts. Attract birds naturally with flowers and water baths
- Do not hang bird feeders from April 15 to Nov. 15.
- Do not attract other wildlife by feeding them, such as deer, turkeys or small mammals.
- Don’t allow bears to become comfortable around your house. If you see one, yell at it, throw things at it, make noise to scare it off.
- Secure compost piles. Bears are attracted to the scent of rotting food.
- Clean the grill after each use.
- Clean up thoroughly after picnics in the yard or on the deck.
- If you have fruit trees, don’t allow the fruit to rot on the ground.
- If you keep small livestock, keep animals in a fully covered enclosure. Construct electric fencing if possible.
- Don’t store livestock food outside, keep enclosures clean to minimize odors, and hang rags soaked in ammonia and/or Pine-Sol around the enclosure.
- If you have beehives, install electric fencing where allowed.
- Talk to your neighbors and kids about being bear-aware.
- Keep garage doors closed.
How to bearproof your vehicles and campsites
Here are some tips from CPW to keep your vehicles and campsites secure from bears:
- Lock your doors when you’re away from home and at night.
- Keep the bottom floor windows of your house closed when you’re not at home.
- Do not keep food in your vehicle; roll up windows and lock the doors of your vehicles.
- When car-camping, secure all food and coolers in a locked vehicle.
- Keep a clean camp, whether you’re in a campground or in the backcountry.
- When camping in the backcountry, hang food 100 feet or more from the campsite; don’t bring any food into your tent.
- Cook food well away from your tent; wash dishes thoroughly.
CPW said it got 3,701 reports of sightings and conflicts with bears in 2021, which they said was a 28% decrease from the average number of reports over the previous two years in the state.