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Black Bear Protocols – Quick tips from the National Park Service

This is what we tell volunteers when they are working on the Blue Ridge Parkway:

  • If you encounter a bear, remain watchful. Do not approach it. If your presence causes a bear to change its behavior (stops feeding, changes its travel direction) — YOU ARE TOO CLOSE! Being too close may promote aggressive behavior from the bear such as running toward you (bluff charge), making loud noises or swatting the ground. The bear is demanding more space. DO NOT RUN, but slowly back away while watching the bear. Try to increase the distance between you and the bear. The bear will probably do the same.
  • If a bear persistently follows you or approaches you without paw swatting or vocalizing, try changing your direction. If the bear continues to follow you, stand your ground.
  • If the bear gets closer, talk loudly or shout at it. Act aggressively and try to intimidate the bear. Act together as a group if you have companions. Make yourselves look as large as possible (for example move to higher ground). Throw non-food objects such as rocks at the bear. Don’t run and don’t turn away from the bear. Don’t leave food for the bear; this encourages further problems.
  • Most injuries from black bears are minor and result from a bear attempting to get at people’s food. If the bear’s behavior indicates that it is after your food and you’re physically attacked, separate yourself from the food and slowly back away.

If the bear shows no interest in your food and you are physically attacked, fight back aggressively with any available object—the may consider you as prey!

SheVille Team

We are a one-of-a-kind magazine that provides local, regional, national and international information about women’s lives and education, performing and visual arts and writing, the environment, green living and sustainability and regional Western North Carolina business, people and events. “Villages preserve culture: dress, food and dance are a few examples. As villages grow in population and turn into towns, local cafes make way for large American chains. Handmade leather sandals are discarded for a pair of Western sneakers. Due to its small size, a village fosters a tight-knit sense of community. Justpeace.org explains the meaning of the African proverb, “It takes a village,” by stating that a sense of community is critical to maintaining a healthy society. Village members hold a wealth of information regarding their heritage: they know about the ancient traditions, methods of production and the resources of the land. When villages become dispersed or exterminated in times of war, this anthropological knowledge disappears. Large cities are not as conducive to growing and producing foods such as fruits and vegetables. Villages, on the other hand, usually have ample amounts of land and other resources necessary for growing conditions.” The Importance of Villages by Catherine Capozzi Our Mission SheVille.org provides readers with information important to women’s lives and well-being. We focus primarily on the areas of education & health, business & finance, the arts & the environment. We are particularly interested in local & regional resources, organizations & events.
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