6 tips to keep yourself, your pets, and bears safe - Yellowstone to Yukon Conservation Initiative

6 tips to keep yourself, your pets, and bears safe

Bear food storage bins in Montana
Food lockers and storage increase safety for all visitors to bear country, Photo: USFWS

It’s the time of year when bears are out of hibernation and more active, and more likely to be seen by people, all across the Yellowstone to Yukon region.

Grizzly bears are showing up in parts of Idaho and Montana where they haven’t been seen in decades. Whether you’re a homeowner, farmer, rancher, recreationist, hunter or public land user, it’s important to take steps to reduce the risk of conflicts with black and grizzly bears. 

This year, Y2Y and Idaho Conservation League have teamed up to help landowners and recreationists prevent and safely resolve conflicts with bears by sharing some tips and important contact information for addressing conflicts with wildlife.

No matter where in bear country you live, you can keep yourself, your pets, and bears safe.

Living near bears: 6 tips for safety

Learn how to properly use EPA-approved bear spray. When out in bear country, recreating or otherwise, always carry bear spray in an accessible place in order to use immediately, if need be. (NPS photo)
Bring in pet food, bird feeders and hummingbird feeders at night, and secure livestock and pet feed in a building or IGBC-certified bear-resistant container. (Shutterstock)
Use electrified fencing to secure fruit-bearing trees and bushes, gardens, and compost piles. (Scott Rulander photo)

Store garbage in a bear-resistant bin, certified by the Interagency Grizzly Bear Committee (IGBC), or in a secured building (four walls, roof, and door with latch) at all times, until the day of disposal.
Secure vulnerable and small livestock (i.e. chickens, goats, apiaries, sick/young/injured livestock) with electrified fencing.
Campground BBQ
Keep grills and BBQs clean of food and grease. Store them in a secured building when not in use. (Andy Rogers photo)

If you have concerns, need help, or want more information, we encourage you to:

We hope these resources can help everyone have a safe and fun summer. Remember to be bear aware!

Thanks to the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation for their support with our bear aware projects in Idaho and Montana for the 2020 season.