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Look who came for a visit yesterday evening

Look who came for a visit yesterday evening

May 12, 2007

Look who came back for a visit

What? Can’t make it out in the photo?

100_1322

This was right before she pressed her nose up against the window to get a better look at us.

The she walked around the side of the house and sniffed where we used to keep the garbage and scratched at the ground where we used to keep the bird feeders. I think she was disappointed that there were no dirty diapers to snack on.

Trolling for more dirty diapers and dropped food

Then she slowly ambled through our backyard and disappeared into the woods behind our house.

Leaving the yard

My 8 yr old came up with a suggestion for handling the bear situation. He said we should all build huge cages around our houses.

“You mean like a zoo, except we are the ones who are in the cages and the animals roam free?”

“EXACTLY!”

To answer the questions people have asked:

1) Animal control will not take them away. I don’t live in a city. There are hundreds upon hundreds of acres of wooded areas behind my house. Our next door neighbor owns over 100 acres. The properties are narrow, but deep. I know all of you who live on farms and such are laughing at the thought of 100 acres being a lot, but here it is. We only own 2.

2) They are protected animals and can not be harmed in any way.

3) While I am somewhat nervous about the kids being outside, realistically these bears are not predators who are going to go after my children like Cujo (again with the Cujo reference, note to self find a new metaphor) They are easily scared away by noise. And if there is one thing that seven children are, it is noisy.

4) I have no idea what my fourth point was, but I had one.

Posted by Chris @ 3:22 pm  

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Comments

  1. bluepaintred says:

    this seriously scares me. I worry each day that i will come here to a post about poor little miles being mauled.

    please be safe!

  2. cole says:

    That is just so cool. And scary. I remember reading a book when I was little about a family making a bottle tree to scare bears away. You just stick bottles on the ends of tree branches. The bears might have been believed to be evil spirits or something? Some native american tale I think?
    http://www.jrn.columbia.edu/studentwork/religion/2004/archives/bottle_tree_indigo_house032904.jpg

  3. Shelly says:

    What about the DNR? It seems like you have to wait for them to actually do something vicious before something can be done - which makes no sense to me.

    They might seem harmless, but if there’s ever mom and cubs situation, it could be dangerous.

    Maybe now would be a good time to get a dog.

  4. Ann says:

    Is bluepaintred for real? Um. Perhaps you should keep those crazy comments to yourself. Weird.

  5. Amy says:

    You’re so lucky, my kids will only ever get to see bears on pictures or at the zoo!

    A

    p.s. Happy Mothers Day hun, hope that you have a wonderful day.

  6. Nohe 5 says:

    Maybe you need one of these http://www.scatmat.com/Products/Scarecrow/

  7. Kether says:

    Recently my mom had a badger living in her front garden. She lives in the city, and called animal control, and they said they would only come get it and move it if SHE caught it. Um. Yeah. I didn’t want her attempting to catch a badger. Eventually the badger moved on. I wonder if they’d recommend catching a bear before they came to get it, too.
    You’re probably right. The kids are noisy, and the bears won’t like that. Its one of those things that happens when you live where animals are.

  8. Kim says:

    Oh my word! I’d probably have to move. Not because of fear of mauling, but fear it would break into the house to get to the pantry!

  9. Liz in Australia says:

    Wow. And my parents thought they had a problem with kangaroos eating their garden during the drought…

  10. Jess says:

    Oh my heavens. I am such a chicken shit I would never leave my house.

  11. Wendy says:

    I am with Jess, I would leave. I run to get to our back office because of the Pitbull tie up in the neighbor’s yard.

    I would be freaked if I saw a bear in my yard. I have no advice. I guess I understand where animal control is coming from, but jeez what are you suppose to do?

  12. GraceD says:

    “Cujo” works very well in describing these ursine situations. You need not search for another metaphor.

    I’ll bet global warming has something to do with the bear appearances. And, the Bush Administration - surely Karl Rove is in on this.

  13. girlymama says:

    and I thought our unusually aggressive squirrels were bad!!

  14. Kris says:

    Chris, I had a very scary nightmare last night in which a bear was in my yard and batting on my window and jumped on me when I tried to get in my car. Totally inspired by your situation.

    Maybe I’m too urban to understand, but man, that’s scary!

  15. Izzy says:

    Bears and dogs are genetically related so Cujo is still a viable reference. Sort of :)

    Happy Mother’s Day to a you…a mom who constantly inspires me!

  16. Heather says:

    Oh wow. I really dont know what to say except for holy you know what! Do you think they are capable of coming in your house? That is what I would be really fearful of. They seem to be a little closer to your house in these pics, coming up to the window. Good luck and be safe!

  17. Denise says:

    ahhh ahh and ahhh!! Yikes!
    Wow! The bottle tree sounds good!
    My kids are enjoying the pictures though!

  18. Tricia says:

    I am from a small town in Canada where bears were very common, but as long as everyone kept their garbage put away properly, and stripped the fruit off their trees, the bears would just move on. They don’t really want anything to do with people, they just want the easy, scavenged food. I get upset when people talk about killing them - it is so unnecessary. Sad.

  19. Grim Reality Girl says:

    WOW. I would have wet myself, then grabbed the camera. Then I’d freak out about letting the kids play in the yard. Then I’d wet myself. Then I’d freak out again. Lather, rinse, repeat.

  20. elizabeth says:

    but who says which bears are predator bears -no one until one attacks or eats someone. i speak from experience. BUT know you use common-mama-sense and are vigilant. i would advise keeping tin cans or pop cans strung together and strewn about the ground so they make noise so YOU can hear them approaching…

  21. Rhea says:

    I love the idea of wildlife roaming around nearby. I live in Boston, so we have wildlife, but it’s limited. I’ve seen wild turkeys, fox, raccoons. I would like to see bears.

  22. Carolynn from Western Australia says:

    How absolutely awesome to have these guys come to visit you. Chris these photos are GREAT. What a wonderful experience for your children to have, they will have these memeories for life to tell their own children and grandchildren.

    As scary as it is, it is also SO AWESOME too.

    Chris I hope too that you have a Wonderful Mother’s Day.

    CJ :-)

  23. Nan says:

    did a quick google search and found these: “Ammonia balloons – partially fill a balloon with ammonia, pressurize, tie off balloon and hang by the door, window, or waste container bear has been trying to get in. Place some scent on outside of balloon such as anise, honey, molasses, or peanut butter. Bear will bite into balloon and get spray of ammonia•”
    Use a “super soaker” type squirt gun that shoots 20 feet or more. Fill tank with ammonia, not water, squirt bear in face (like ya wanna get close enough to attempt this one!!)www.aspenpitkin.com/pdfs/depts/33/BEAR_DETERRANTS.PDF
    and while this one is for montana, there is good stuff:
    http://www.yellowstone-bearman.com/B_housesafe.html

  24. Nan says:

    bears have a fine sense of smell and the ammonia will be so offensive they may be convinced that your home is not a nice place to hang out. I had to put away all my bird feeders etc when i lived in the Catskills, and tried various ways to discourage return visits. I eventually found a feeder that fits into a window sill and installed it in an upstairs window. it was great. here’s one link i found: http://www.bestnest.com/bestnest/RTProduct.asp?SKU=BCO-78621 and another: http://www.birds-n-garden.com/windowsill_bird_feeders_2.html

  25. Lacy says:

    Oh man….I think I’d get a dog at the very least. NOT A PUPPY! You don’t need anything else to clean up after….but a one year old rescue lab that would bark might be helpful here. And this is coming from someone who is NOT a dog lover and whose children feel deprived because we don’t have one!

  26. Ms McFearsome says:

    Happy Mother’s Day (even in the Trenches ;) )!

  27. julie says:

    The bear is beautiful. Hopefully he will find somewhere else to roam so you won’t have to worry.

  28. t in hd says:

    LOL Chris, you have a BEAR nose print on your window!!! Bet that makes a change from all the kid nose prints! ;-) Did you clean it off or leave it on there?

    We used to have these big*ssed racoons come in the garden at night when we lived in the PNW. We’d sit on the front porch and watch them. Didn’t get bears. I think I’d be looking into the cost of 12 foot privacy fence right now, were I in your shoes, but that’s probaby because I’ve become pretty urbanized over the years!

  29. Gift of Green says:

    Good night in the morning!! Get rid of your blueberry bushes!! Haven’t you read Blueberries for Sal!? :)
    Have a great mother’s day, Chris!!

  30. liz says:

    Holy guacamole.

  31. goodsandwich says:

    Wowza! Black bears are not usually interested in humans except for our garbage so technically you’re probably quite safe, but still - a little nerve-wracking! You’ve shown great presence of mind so far, that’s for sure. And I’m sure some of the children are now researching bears anyway so I doubt I can tell you a thing about bears that they haven’t already found out!

  32. julie says:

    Wait a minute…this bear lives in your neighbor’s woods? His 100 acre woods? Is your neighbor, by any chance, named Christopher Robin? Perhaps you could scare it away with some Heffalumps.

  33. Novaks8 says:

    The truth is that your kids have a much better chance of being mauled by a dog than a bear!

    Kind of like swimming at the beach and fearing sharks when the rip current is a million more times likely to kill you!

    Don’t even get me started on how dangerous driving is!

    lol

    Beautiful bear.
    We have them around here too.

  34. Brandi says:

    I’m more with the other commenters who are not totally freaked out at the thought of actual nature being anywhere near you. What a neat opportunity to have seen a bear live as opposed to stuffed, or in a zoo.

    I loved Julie’s question about Pooh and 100 Acre Wood!

    Happy Mother’s Day to all, may you not have to deal with as much poo as usual today ;-)

  35. t in hd says:

    “julie says:
    Wait a minute…this bear lives in your neighbor’s woods? His 100 acre woods? Is your neighbor, by any chance, named Christopher Robin? Perhaps you could scare it away with some Heffalumps.”

    ROTFLMAO!!!!! Good Julie, very good! ;-)

  36. Andrea Q says:

    Here’s an article fromt he Connecticut DEP regarding bears:

    http://www.ct.gov/dep/cwp/view.asp?Q=379650&A=2794

  37. Heather says:

    Yikes! Bears are one of my big fears. ::shudder::

  38. Daisy says:

    100 acre wood? Pooh? What’s next, Eeyore or Piglet? I like the idea of Heffalumps to scare it away.

  39. Jordana says:

    I am such a city girl. We’re so excited about the prospect of our “big” yard in the new house. It will be .68 acres. But if I ever find a bear in the yard, I think I’d be moving into an apartment downtown.

  40. wookie says:

    Good luck and make sure the kids don’t wander off alone! I hope they move on sooner rather than later. The ministry of natural resources in canada has an excellent website on bears and bear safety. It sounds like you’ve done what you can and hopefully you won’t see any more of them. You don’t keep any fruiting plants or trees on your property, do you?

    Maybe I’m just a bleeding heart liberal or something, but it seems like using a supersoaker to spray a wild animal with ammonia as a deterrent is just plain cruel (as it could pretty easily blind the animal).

  41. Susan says:

    My husband made me promise to write you. Apparently he’s quite concerned (not that I’m not - but, you know ;)).

    He said if the bear comes near the window again, to bang a pot with a spoon (inside the house, of course). He said that should run him off.

    He also asked, “Does she have PROTECTION?” I’m assuming he is talking rifles and not birth control.

    lololol

  42. Tania says:

    I know it must be scarey but OMG those photos are so cool (for someone from the land downunder) as the PP from Australia said the most exciting wildlife we have in our garden is kangaroos…and my mother still makes a run for her car in case one of the big bucks decides to attack her *rolling my eyes* and ROFL

  43. Brigitte says:

    I haven’t seen bears yet, but since moose have made it to town, it’s just a matter of time. We have so many skunks, opossums, raccoons and coyotes, I think I’m more afraid of a rabid animal showing up than a bear, though.

    Ditto on the “Hundred Acre Wood” comment, too funny!

  44. Nancy Politis says:

    Wow. My boys would have loved to see that. The dog would have been tearing down doors to chase it.

  45. zookeeper says:

    Have you called DEP? Animal control can’t do anything, but DEP might. They just removed a bear from a neighborhood in Hamden a couple weeks ago.

  46. Carrie says:

    I think this is so awesome, Your property seems like a dream property to me. And your family reminds me of my brothers, they too have 6 boys and one girl. I am definately adding you to my “favorites”

  47. Ann says:

    I live in northern Canada where grizzly bear sightings are a normal occurrence. Use your common sense and it’s no big deal. Now poisonous snakes, living near those would scare me- A LOT!

  48. Tara says:

    I think I would scream.

  49. Random Thoughts of a Young Mother » Guess what is living in our back yard? says:

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