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Bears are roaming in NC, Wildlife Commission says. Time to put up the bird feeder.
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Bears are roaming in NC, Wildlife Commission says. Time to put up the bird feeder.

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Bear at Bird Feeder

Shown is a bear scavenging for bird seeds in a bird feeder most likely during hyperphagia, a period during the fall when bears eat 10 times their normal caloric intake, to prepare for hibernation. Biologists with the N.C. Wildlife Commission are reminding people to protect themselves as bear activity increases this season.

RALEIGH — The North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission is warning that bears in the state are preparing for hibernation and will be foraging for food outside of their normal ranges.

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The commission said in a news release last week that bears will likely be venturing closer to homes and campgrounds as well as trying to cross busy highways to find food. And they will be protective of the food they find.

The commission said that people need to take measures to protect themselves and the bears. That includes storing trash in the garage, removing bird feeders and cleaning grills. And of course, never purposefully feed a bear.

The animals are biologically programmed to go into hyperdrive in the fall because they need to put on a thick layer of fat. This power-eating marathon is called hyperphagia, and bears must consume 10 times as many calories.

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