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Bear activity in the Grand Valley

Colorado Parks and Wildlife says they’ve gotten several reports of bear activity lately, but it’s not uncommon for this time of year.
Colorado Parks and Wildlife says they’ve gotten several reports of bear activity lately, but it’s not uncommon for this time of year.(Jason Burger)
Published: Jul. 27, 2020 at 10:44 PM MDT|Updated: Jul. 28, 2020 at 9:20 AM MDT
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GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. (KJCT) -

Colorado Parks and Wildlife says they’ve gotten several reports of bear activity lately, but that it’s not uncommon for this time of year.

With more activity, the department says they might have to get involved soon.

“We’ve had sightings of them from neighbors and stuff, walking through the fields back here,” said Orchard Mesa resident, Trina Nostrand. “We get them off and on, we’ve had one right behind us too.”

The B ½ and 30 Road area may not look like the heart of bear country, but Trina says they like to check out the fields right across from her house.

“Peppers potatoes, corn is over here. With the little kids, and some of the smaller animals, it makes you think a little more,” Nostrand said.

And there’s been some activity a little further East.

“We’ve got a bear in the Palisade area that’s hitting some of the agricultural areas out there, and we might look to trap that bear and just relocate it,” said spokesman for Colorado Parks and Wildlife, Randy Hampton.

CPW says bears finding food in private fields is common, but they are after something specific.

“We’re in this place right now where they are waiting on the berry crops to ripen up,” Hampton said.

But there are some rules to follow if a bear is on your property, and the same thing is true, even if a bear goes after your pets.

“You can’t just shoot a bear because it’s on your property or it gets into your trash…or may it’s, you know, eating your fruit trees. I love my dog as much as anyone else, but you can’t shoot a bear because it chases your dog,” Hampton said.

But, if the bear is attacking you, or family members you’re allowed to defend yourself however you need to. But if you see a bear on your property, CPW wants you to give them a call.

“Our ultimate goal, would be to make sure the bear just goes on its way on its own, the other intervention we can take is to relocate it,” Hampton said.

CPW says if a bear starts getting aggressive towards people they have to euthanize it, and the bears will be active again around September when they start eating more for hibernation.

For a list of ways to prep your home for bears, go here: https://cpw.state.co.us/Lists/News%20Releases/DispForm.aspx?ID=7016

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