Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Da Bears


There be a bear in our midst, and he or she is definitely looking for the picnic basket. Or, to be more specific, the holy garbage can.
A perk to living in Alaska is the abundance of wildlife roaming about our fair city, to the joy of the tourists and the chagrin of wildlife officials. Every spring the Yogis and Boo Boos wake up from their dens (which, incidentially, have been found right across the creek from our neighborhood) and go in search of the nutrition that has eluded them since the previous November.
Normally, their diet includes moose calves and the odd downer moose, and an occasional domestic critter (i.e. cow, dog, etc.). This year, with the season starting late and moose calving a bit behind schedule, the bears began feasting on our trash cans.
East and South Anchorage neighborhoods, especially, are in the target zone because of the proximity to the mountains. In East Anchorage, where many homeowners are a bit, shall we say, lax on the educational component of recycling, clean yards, and garbage removal, the bears have found Mecca.
Anchorage's Fish and Wildlife guru, Rick Sinnott, has cracked down on trash mongers, fielding a huge fine if the garbage cans are outside from April to October. But, as is the case of our neighbors, this seems to fall on deaf ears.
Last weekend a black bear was found sleeping at the bottom of a neighborhood deck, napping off the bounty of the park trash can (why the Muni of Anchorage hasn't fixed that yet, I can't figure). He/she proceeded to amble to the folks across the street and investigated their front porch.
The problem lies in their neighbors. A grandma, daughter, and miscellaneous grandchildren who never seem to remember the Bear-Trash rule. Every Sunday, regardless of the warnings, they station their three cans of garbage at the curb to sit overnight in plain view of the bears, coyotes, and ravens.
Monday they put it out too late, so now it sits along side their house, up to six or seven bags now. Yukon and I, along with the other neighbors, have told them about the bear, and the trash rule, yet there it all sits.
I am a bit unsure what to do now. I hate being the complainer, squealer, whatever. Yet with small children outdoors at all hours during the summer, we cannot ignore it too long. Bears love to continue a habit they have begun; the Anchorage Daily News reported in an April issue (www.adn.com/news/alaska/wildlife/bears/story) the number of bears inhabiting the general proximity of Anchorage, and our neighborhood. I sure don't need them all finding the trash!

2 comments:

Diane said...

thank you for visiting my blog! I have always wanted to visit Alaska (especially in the summer). I enjoyed your blog, and especially (of course) what you say about the dogs.

Is your cousin a chaplain? Or a seminary student?

Yukon Jimmy said...

Hello Sweetie! I spoke with Peter as well as Tom, and gave both of them hardcopy printouts of the first 2 pages from your blog that also inclueded your website address. Saw Todd and told him that while bach-ing it this week, I had already seen my first Star Wars episode, and Todd recommended some Lord of the Rings. Told Laura D. you were looking for the best burgers + fish and chips in Haines (what a worthy mission). All my love, Jimmy Yukon xoxo