Black bear and human conflicts are becoming too frequent in the Leavenworth area, so a partnership has formed to create a BearWise community where strategies will hopefully result in fewer dangerous interactions.

In the past two years in Leavenworth, a woman was attacked.  The female bear was euthanized, leaving two orphan cubs behind.  Another female bear was killed on East Leavenworth Road and her three cubs were captured near Sleeping Lady Resort.  Four or more bears were relocated after they were found foraging for food in garbage cans, leaving behind seven more orphaned cubs.

Read More:  Three Black Bears Relocated From Leavenworth

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To cut down on the problem of bear foraging for human food in garbage containers, the City of Leavenworth, Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) and Defenders of Wildlife placed 40 bear-resistant trash receptacles in problem areas last summer.

If fewer bears are habituated to residential areas or to any attractants in search of food, fewer bears will have to be removed by lethal means.

Read More: The Bears Are Awake - What To Do If You See One

The City of Leavenworth, WDFW and Waste Management are encouraging residents and visitors to practice BearWise practices to cut down on human and black bear interactions

  • Do Not Feed or Approach Bears. Intentionally feeding bears or allowing them to find anything that smells or tastes like food teaches bears to approach homes or people to look for more. Bears will defend themselves if you get too close; don’t risk your safety or theirs.
  • Secure Food, Garbage, and Recycling. Food and its odors attract bears; don’t reward them with readily available food or garbage. City residents can obtain bear-resistant garbage cans from Waste Management.
  • Remove Bird Feeders. Birdseed has lots of calories, removing feeders when bears are active is the best way to avoid attracting bears.
  • Do Not Leave Pet Food Outside. Feed pets indoors. If you must feed pets outside, feed in single portions and remove food/bowls afterwards.
  • Clean and Store Grills. Clean grills or smokers after each use and store in a secure area.

Defenders of Wildlife Senior Representative Zoe Hanley said "We are thrilled to support Leavenworth in becoming Washington's first bear smart community".

Experience this amazing real life bat cave in Leavenworth

Peek Inside This Real Life Bat Cave in Leavenworth, featuring an all-natural rock hot tub with a waterfall. As seen on Airbnb.

Gallery Credit: Patti Banner


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