Black Bears are On the Move in Vermont

When I moved to Vermont from Washington, DC a few years back, I was excited by the notion of living close to wildlife. We have a wonderful array of creatures big and small in the Green Mountain State, and thankfully, Vermonters have made protecting open spaces and wildlife a priority, so everything from migrating songbirds to moose have enough habitat to thrive.

Well, that habitat includes my back yard, and yesterday one of the wild neighbors came by to snack at my bird feeder–and it was a bit bigger than a hummingbird.

That's not a bird eating bird seed. Photo Credit: Dan McGowan

I’ll admit…

I should have known better than to fill the feeders this time of year, living in black bear country. We’d had some alerts that bears were on the prowl and I’d seen signs of bears earlier this spring.

The good news is, (s)he came and went without incident (except the mangled bird feeder), and I got a few great photos of a healthy, beautiful black bear.

Who will win? The Black bear or the bird feeder? Photo Credit: Dan McGowan
And the Black bear won. Photo Credit: Dan McGowan

Lesson learned

I’ve removed the feeders, which I learned from this great National Wildlife article, is a good solution to avoiding regular black bear encounters. Fortunately, my Certified Wildlife Habitat is in bloom, so our birds and bees are still able to find plenty of food to keep them happy this summer. I’ll keep a look-out for the bear, since it looks like my raspberries and blueberries will be a bumper crop this season and I have a feeling the word will spread that it’s all-you-can-eat at our yard.

I wouldn’t have it any other way.