SEVIERVILLE, Tenn. (AP) - Tennessee wildlife officials are asking people who live in the mountains to not feed the bears.
This has been a poor year for the berries, nuts and acorns black bears depend on for survival and many of them have been seen in residential neighborhoods foraging for food.
John Mike of the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency told The Mountain Press he thinks bears are beautiful, but letting them get into garbage or eat pet food will only make them more dependent upon people. Mike asks people to secure garbage cans, not leave out pet food - even delay filling bird feeders until the bears go into hibernation.
Mike said bears will move on if they don't find much food. He also said it's easier to get people to cooperate than it is to relocate problem bears.
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