With bears emerging from hibernation in the coming weeks, the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources is reminding homeowners to check their property for food sources that could attract bears.

“Prevention is key. Once a bear finds a food source, it will likely return,” Eric Nelson, supervisor for the DNR, said in a press release.  

As bears emerge from hibernation, their metabolism gradually ramps up and they will begin looking for food at a time when berries and green vegetation are scarce. Home and cabin owners should remove or secure attractants such as birdseed, garbage, livestock feed, or compost to reduce potential conflict.

The DNR warns residents to never approach or try to pet a bear. Injuries to people is rare, but bears are potentially dangerous because of their size, strength, and speed.

If bear problems persist after cleaning up food sources, contact a DNR area wildlife office for advice. For the name of the local wildlife manager, contact the DNR Information Center at 651-296-6157, or find wildlife area office contact information on the DNR website. 

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