Similar to all wild animals, bears do not like to be surprised. They have well-developed senses of smell and hearing that help them avoid human presence. A general rule to avoid close encounters with bears is thus to eliminate the element of surprise by announcing our presence.
- Make yourself noticeable, especially when walking through dense vegetation or in rugged terrain.
- Keep your dog on a leash. If your dog comes upon a bear, it will probably rush the bear directly and lead it to you when it seeks protection.
- If you see a bear, never try to approach or disturb it (e.g. by throwing rocks at it). Never feed a bear, even if it looks calm and curious.
- Stay away from a bear feeding on an animal carcass or slaughter remains. In most cases, the bear will retreat from the food source, but it may also choose to defend it from an intruder.
- Do not enter the vicinity of or crawl into a bear den.
- Do not leave any left-over food or other organic waste in the forest or close to mountain huts or elsewhere near the forest’s edge. All garbage must be deposited in appropriate garbage bins inaccessible to bears or taken home. It is very important that bears do not associate food sources with human presence, one of the main problems in human-bear conflicts. It is in our interest to maintain bears’ natural shyness.
Read more about how to behave in bear area here.