About black bears
Black bears can swim, climb trees and run very fast. They can be seen in our area at any time, day or night, often searching for food such as berries, nuts, insects and carrion. Do not feed, approach or get between a bear and its food or its cubs. Most black bear and human encounters involve food. Black bears usually are shy of humans, but some may be naturally curious.
Help keep bears wild
Bears that enter neighborhoods are typically on the hunt for food. Dry summer weather can be difficult for bears, and many of them turn to Town streets to find food. This instinct only becomes stronger as bears start to prepare for hibernation in late September and early October. (They usually begin hibernation around mid-November.)
Photo courtesy of Tony Lane
Once a bear finds food at these locations, it becomes programmed to continue looking for food there and in similar places. In addition, a mother bear who finds food in trash cans may teach her cubs to do the same.
Here are a few tips on keeping bears and your home safe:
Keep trash cans locked up, and don’t leave trash out overnight.
Clean trash cans with ammonia to reduce odors that attract bears.
Take down bird feeders when bears are active in the late summer and early fall.
Do not leave pet food or dishes outdoors at night. Store pet food in airtight containers.
Clean outdoor grills after each use. The smell of grease can attract bears, even if no food is present.
Never intentionally feed bears to attract them for viewing. (It is illegal to feed bears in Colorado)
Encounters and sightings
In the past few years, the Town has seen an increase in bear sightings. If you encounter a black bear:
Most importantly, stay calm, and do not run away
Avoid direct eye contact, but keep an eye on the bear at all times
Slowly back away
Make a lot of noise
If you wish to report a sighting, call the Castle Rock Police Department nonemergency number, 303-663-6100, or the Colorado Division of Parks and Wildlife, 303-291-7227.