(Ouray) They feed the deer and elk when the snow’s up to their arses so why can’t the Division of Wildlife feed the black bear? Is there some secret that we civilians have not considered or has the possibility not been explored? Are they short of berries too?

Every year bear have to be destroyed when they venture into RV magic poodle lands, alleys and town garbage dumps. Hey, the bruins aren’t looking to start trouble. They don’t want to show up spiffy at your autumn barbecue to socialize. They’d rather slide in after everyone else has gone home to clean up the mess. They don’t want to rub elbows with people. They just want a snack.

Lots of snacks as it works out.

Right now bear need to put on enough weight to stop Oprah Winfrey mid-sentence. They are on deadline to add enough flab to make it through the hibernation time. Well there’s just not enough natural forage out there in the rain-choked forests. In addition, bear are curious and enjoy a trip into town in early morning and the evening.

Grub and a stroll. Now who would fault these fury monsters for that? THE TRANQUILIZER? Couldn’t the tag-happy DOW drop food a safe distance outside town sites and detour the bear before they get into trouble? We’re sure there are countless by-the-book reasons but lettuce proceed…

The other approach is to continue to take target practice on mischievous bears in trees that would probably wander back into the woods sooner or later if people would simply let them be. DOW marksmen shoot the bear with tranquilizer darts that put them to sleep and, at least in theory, do no harm to the animal.

Unfortunately the beasts didn’t read the small print. They soon nod out and fall from their perch like a bag of rocks often breaking their necks. They then have to be destroyed. All in a day’s work?

All we’re asking for here is a few dead cows, a helicopter load of apples and a handful of magic beans.

In closing, be advised that wearing bells and clanging pans to prevent contact with hungry bear in the wilds has been found to be less than effective if one is carrying aromatic foods such as trail mix or peanut butter sandwiches. The concept of puffing up and waving arms to make one appear larger than life in the event a confrontation with a bear is also of equal impact. Rule of thumb: If you want to keep your thumbs (and the rest of your hide) avoid fish-based eau de cologne and/or honey flavored shampoo when in bear country, which is most likely your own backyard.

– Rocky Flats

Filed Under: Fractured Opinion


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