Nearly 5,000 Colorado Bear Sightings Reported in 2020
Colorado Parks & Wildlife received nearly 5,000 reports of bear activity in 2020.
The first came on Jan. 3 in Aspen and the latest came on Dec. 29 in Aurora. In all, there were 4,943 total bear sightings reported during the year.
CPW Wildlife Manager Matt Yamashita classified 2020 as a "fairly normal" year for bear activity in the state in a press release that shared all of the bear sightings and statistics.
Here's a time lapse of where all of the sightings were reported:
Trash continues to be the biggest bear attractant, part of about a third (1,661 total) of all reported Colorado sightings.
CPW says that "much of what people throw away smells like food to a hungry bear." Also once a bear learns where its easy to get garbage, they return often. Securing trash is essential in Colorado bear country.
Other top bear attractants were bird feeders (411 reports), unsecured chicken coops (254) and livestock (391).
CPW recommends not feeding birds in Colorado during the stretch of the year when bears are active.
For livestock, there were 254 reports of bears getting into chicken coops and 74 reports of bears getting into beehives — hello, Winnie the Pooh.
In 2020, CPW documented 362 instances of bears breaking into homes/cabins/garages.
CPW also reported relocating 89 bears and euthanizing 120 bears in 2020.
For more information on living with bears in Colorado, check out CPW's guide.