Black bears push into Colorado Springs before hibernation

(KKTV)
Published: Sep. 21, 2018 at 10:18 PM MDT
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“They are wild animals. The key word there is 'wild.' We need to keep them that way.”

That's the statement from Colorado Parks and Wildlife that pretty much covered everything.

With the changing seasons, wildlife officials told 11 News it's likely more sightings of bears will happen before hibernation,

“They are foraging 20 out of 24 hours a day to pack on that weight over winter. They are eating 20,000 calories per day, about 1,000 per hour,” said Assistant Area Wildlife Manager Cody Wigner.

While 11 news was interviewing Wigner, our reporter overheard a man asking for more information about bears after a close encounter.

Turns out his family had just seen a black bear no more than 10 to 20 feet away.

“First time I have seen a bear and that close and being about as tall as I was, it was a little scary," admitted mother Emily Park.

"I yelled at my kids; we all ran inside … it didn’t even bother looking at us.”

The bear moved on, but the family wanted to learn more for next time it happens to make sure their kids and the bears would be safe.

Parks and Wildlife mentioned a few tips like getting bear-proof trashcans and laying out ammonia-soaked rags to detour bears.

A lot of this comes from smells, according to wildlife officers.

"So keeping the odors in the trash down is important too," Wigner explained.

"Anything that is going to be odorous or things that are going to spill, putting them in the freezer and keeping them away from the garbage can until the last second.”