Tuesday 5 June 2012
We live in prime bear country and there are certainly bears here.
Since moving into our house eight years ago, we have had bear incidents every season.
Some stories are fairly mundane, while others are exciting.
I don't want this blog to become a guns and ammo forum, but living in the country and keeping livestock demands a minimum level of wildlife control.
You don't often need to pull the trigger, but it is important to be able to do so if the need arises.
The garbage is the usual target and the number of times that trash has been strewn across the driveway has been too often to count.
I finally built a proper garbage box last year, but if they can't get into that, they may head for the chickens.
Kira's aunt and uncle lost several chickens to a bear last season.
It would go right into the coop, grab a snack and go.
Then it would keep coming back for more whenever it was hungry.
That bear found a new home in a freezer.
It also serves to keep them away from the chickens until I get myself ready.
If we totally cleaned up all traces of food and food waste in the yard, the bears would probably go straight for the chickens.
I can't let that happen.
We have a firearm suitable for large bears.
It's a short range affair, but it is proven.
Bears can be extra dangerous if the first round doesn't work, so it had better do it's job right away.
These rounds are extremely effective at short range.
I don't plan on getting too close though.
However, Kira wants me to be proactive and would like me to take steps to protect the home.
She interprets my lack of concern as the same attitude that killed the crocodile hunter years ago.
I am relaxed about bears because they are mostly predictable; if you scare the bear, it will run away.
There have been historical exceptions though, and I would hate to get famous for being stupid.
There has been bear sign this week.
Two large piles of bear poo, a track in the mud on the way to the pig enclosure,
and a sighting by a neighbor.
The bear is extra large and I was warned to watch for trouble.
Martin was here today with his family to see the ducklings.
He thought he saw something large lurking along the treeline, but he is hunting all of the time, even while we're having tea. I figured he was just seeing things.
I guess it may have been the bear.
Every noise stirs your attention and sleep is shallow.
It is a little exciting, but the novelty wears off when there has been damage done.
I am hoping for a quiet night.
But I am ready for a bear.