The Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry is asking area residents to be aware of bears in the Fort Frances area and to take the necessary steps to avoid attracting bears into local neighbourhoods.
In the past few weeks, people in the Idylwild Drive, Reef Point Road and Rocky Inlet Road have reported multiple interactions with black bears. Of these reported incidents, several involved items such as household and commercial garbage and fruit trees.
The province is reminding the public that bears are often attracted to things such as garbage, bird food including suet, seed and nectar, odours from barbecues, and ripe fruit left on trees or on the ground. Removing these attractants can help keep bears out of the area.
Currently, natural foods for bears in this area are below average.
When the availability of natural foods is limited, bears will look for alternative food sources, often in communities.
When bears cannot gain access to non-natural foods such as garbage, they will not stay in the area.
If a bear poses an immediate threat to public safety by exhibiting threatening or aggressive behaviour, call 911.
For advice on removing bear attractants, call the Bear Wise reporting line toll-free at 1-866-514-2327, Hearing Impaired (TTY) 1-705-945-7641. You will be connected with a live operator during bear season (April 1 to Nov. 30).
What to do in emergency and non-emergency situations: www.ontario.ca/page/prevent-bear-encounters-bear-wise.
Read more about bears at ontario.ca/bearwise.