Tag Archives: bear decor

Bears in the Garden

The end of the winter season is approaching and as the snow melts, common winter birds begin to head back north. Dapper gray and white juncos, beautiful finches, and other species that took advantage of the backyard feeder leave and are replaced by robins and other birds of the summer. As the weather changes, we might also see other types of animals visiting the backyard. If the backyard is big and close to forested areas and green space, such wildlife can include raccoons, opossums, wild turkeys, and even deer. However, as much as we enjoy watching wildlife in the backyard, there are certain animals that we would probably rather see elsewhere. One such animal is the Black Bear, a large animal that has become surprisingly common in certain parts of the eastern United States.

The Black Bear ranges in fairly wild, woodland habitats in much of Canada and Alaska, and a small population also lives in the mountains of northern Mexico. It also occurs in the lower 48 states in parts of the Great Lakes region, New England, the Appalachians, the Ozarks, the Rocky Mountains, the coastal Pacific states, and small populations in coastal forests of the southern states. Historically, this species lived over a much larger area but deforestation and constant hunting caused it to disappear from various parts of its range. Despite those declines, decades of reforestation and hunting regulations have given a boost to Black Bear populations in many places, especially the north-eastern states.

One such place where bears have made a notable increase is northern New Jersey. The proximity of heavily forested state parks to small towns has resulted in many sightings of bears in urban areas, on trails in parks, and some even visiting big backyards. Although most bears stay away from people, some do become so accustomed to people that they lose their fear of humans, rummage through garbage cans, and look for hand-outs. These bears are the ones that can cause problems and even become dangerous because they associate people with food and can lash out when they don’t get what they want. Fortunately, it’s easy enough to avoid such problem bears by just keeping a safe distance from any bear that seems tame, and never giving them food. Instead of throwing it a snack or two, if a “tame” bear is encountered in the garden or elsewhere, the animal control authorities should be called as soon as possible.

The easiest way to keep bears out of the backyard is by removing any sources of food. Some suggestions include not leaving garbage outside or keeping it in a locked container, putting bird feeders into storage until the bear has been removed, not leaving pet food outside (which also attracts other animals), and quickly harvesting berries and other fruits before bears can come and eat them. Large dogs can also keep bears away but it’s better to keep the dogs inside if bears are around because dogs of any size can be injured or even killed by a bear, and small pets could become easy prey.

Although some folks might love to see a bear or two in the garden, both us and the bears will be much better off if we leave those encounters to the wild places. Instead of bringing wild Black Bears into the garden, we can still enjoy the beauty and wild, curious nature of these wonderful animals by way of realistic animal garden sculptures. These include detailed statues like “The Expert Fisherman” Black Bear Statue, and the Lemont the Lovable Lounger Black Bear Statue.

Find the best selection of high quality animal garden statues at Design Toscano.

How to See Cute and Cuddly Bears

The bear is one of the best known animals on the planet. In many parts of Europe, Asia, and North America, it’s also one of the first wild animals that we learn about, although not usually from seeing one in the backyard. Millions of people typically become aware of bears by way of the classic teddy bear. One of the more popular cute toys, kids might love to hug it and carry it around, but it’s a far cry from reality. While baby bears do look cute enough to be cuddled, no one in their right mind would even think about approaching one, especially when its mother is there to prevent that from happening with sharp teeth and ready claws.

We can’t really blame her because after all, how many people would let a potential threat get close to their babies?¬†We can still appreciate wild bears from a safe distance, though, and this is possible at quite a few places in the United States and Canada. Although there are eight species of bears that live in the wild areas of the world, the most common and easiest species to see is the American Black Bear. Thanks to proper wildlife management, this species has become fairly common in many parts of both countries and has even been seen visiting the big backyards of many people who live next to large, forested areas. That said, the easiest way to see a wild American Black Bear is by visiting Yellowstone National Park, and other protected areas where they have become accustomed to people.

That’s not necessarily a good thing if the bears are actually looking for handouts because they have been fed by tourists (illegally). This can make them bold and potentially dangerous. However, as long as we don’t try to feed or pet them, or venture outside of the protection of a vehicle, we can still safely admire such bears at fairly close range. Although some foolish people do get out their cars to get even closer shots, park rangers can fine them and will remind them that Black Bears are very capable of seriously injuring and killing people, and have done so on several occasions. All it takes is the wild animal to associate people with food, and for that animal to either be having a bad day and/or hungry enough to lash out at someone who gets too close.

American Black Bears can also be seen while hiking in forested and wild areas of the Rocky Mountains, the Great Smoky Mountains, the Adirondacks, and many other wild places where they occur. The best way to see them is to ask park rangers where bears have been seen most often. Don’t be surprised if they mention waiting in the car near dumpsters that are visited by bears in search of food scraps! Bears are omnivorous opportunists after all, and many will eat everything from mice and other small animals to honey, apples, grubs, and even bird seed.

In North America, the other main bear species is the legendary Grizzly. Although it is considered the same species as the European Brown Bear, the Grizzly is bigger and more dangerous. It used to occur in many areas of the Great Plains and American west but is currently only found in wild areas of Yellowstone National Park, Montana, Idaho, and Washington state, western Canada, and Alaska. Since this big bear does not take kindly to being surprised, hikers in grizzly country usually wear bells or make other noise to warn the bear of their approach. If you do want to see one in the wild, the best places to look are Yellowstone National Park, wild areas in western Canada, and in many parts of Alaska, especially along rivers when salmon are running.

Find the best selection of beautiful bear sculptures, and other high quality animal garden statues at Design Toscano.