December 12, 2018

Bears Don’t “Naturally” Break Into Homes?

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The Outdoor Wire files a report about increased incidences of encounters with black bears. According to the report, a game warden in Vermont says that “…bears don’t naturally break into homes. They must first have had experience receiving food from humans. The process of habituation begins with attractants that residents leave out such as birdseed, pet food, or unsecured garbage.”

That makes sense…right? Or maybe not so much. What does it mean to say bears don’t naturally break into homes? Does that mean that it is not a “natural” instinct of survival to go around breaking into homes?

I guess I don’t get it. The report says the “process of habituation” begins when bears are attracted to those things humans do that tells a bear, “Hey, bear! That smells like food and you are hungry!”

I understand that bears are attracted to smells. Is this warden trying to tell us that if a bear smells hot apple pie sitting on the sideboard, he doesn’t know that it is food because he’s never had it before?

Why is it that animal protectionists place so many human qualities on animals and deny other qualities if it doesn’t neatly fit the narrative? Wild animal behavior is quite unpredictable. That’s why we label them as “wild” animals.

I will remind all readers that a bear has a sense of smell that is seven times greater than that of a bloodhound. Under the right conditions, a bloodhound can detect the odor of one cell. That’s right, one cell. A bear can probably smell your dirty laundry.

Whether your smelly good “food source” (for bears) is or isn’t “secured” doesn’t mean a bear can’t smell it if it’s put away. And, whether a bear has “previous training” on what is and what isn’t human food and how to get it, a hungry bear doesn’t give a rat’s behind whether a game warden thinks a bear won’t break into your home unless he’s first had the proper training. To think such is a pretty good indication that you don’t understand how the voracity caused by intense hunger pains will drive any wild animal…well, wild.

We shouldn’t assume anything. If you live in bear country you might have the unpleasant experience of encountering a hungry bear. Look out! A curious bear…maybe not so much of a problem.

Bears “naturally” live in the woods. Bears “naturally” eat when they are hungry. If hunger overpowers fear of humans, with or without the proper training, you might have a midnight visitor come knocking on your door…or it’s just come crashing in without knocking.

It should be only “natural” to be prepared…but we’re not.

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