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In The News – Spring weather is coming, and with it some very hungry bears

March 24, 2024 | Member Submitted

Originally Published in the Sierra Sun on 03/24/2024, Submitted

LAKE TAHOE, Calif./Nev. – The snow will melt soon in the Lake Tahoe region and winter will give way to a busy spring for area wildlife. Bears that have been wintering in their dens will emerge soon and they will be hungry!

Each fall, black bears go through hyperphagia (pronounced hi·per·fay·jee·uh) which is an increase in feeding activity (consuming about 25,000 calories a day) driven by their need to fatten up before winter. Over the course of the winter, bears’ bodies utilize those fat stores during hibernation when food is scarce. Come spring, their body mass will have naturally decreased and as a result, bears will be on the lookout for easily accessible food sources to help rebuild those fat reserves. Bears will instinctively seek out areas where they can find fresh greens like grasses and forbs which can bring them into neighborhoods.

As bears make their way through human-populated areas, please be vigilant about cleaning up and securing bear attractants. The Tahoe Interagency Bear Team (TIBT) knows that many people choose to feed birds in winter, but please do not let bird feeders attract and feed bears. Now is the time to take those bird feeders down completely. 


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