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Yukon Men: Deadly black bear keeping Tanana residents on alert

Mechele R. Dillard's picture

Charlie is on the hunt for a bear tonight in Tanana, while resident James Roberts is keeping his dogs in shape with a nine-mile run.

This week on the Discovery Channel’s hit reality series Yukon Men, Charlie is on the hunt for a deadly black bear, which has become a bit too familiar with the populated areas of Tanana.

Black bears are, according to National Geographic, the most common bears in North America. They can be found in varying types of environments, from forests to swamps. Black bears are the type most familiar to North America residents, and, contrary to their name, can come in a range of colors, including blue-grey, blue-black, brown, cinnamon and, rarely, white.

It is extremely important not to feed bears, as they can easily develop a taste for human food and garbage, at which point they become particularly dangerous to human populations in an area. Typically, black bears eat grasses, roots, berries and insects. However, if available, they will eat fish and mammals, as well, National Geographic indicates. It is because of their opportunistic eating style that they will go for human food and garbage when available. Bears are usually solitary animals, although females stay with their cubs for about two years. Nat Geo warns:

Bears who become habituated to human food at campsites, cabins, or rural homes can become dangerous and are often killed—thus the frequent reminder: Please don't feed the bears!

Black Bears Snacking on Puppies?

Given these warnings, it is not surprising that Charlie is on the hunt this week for a black bear that has been making itself at home around Tanana. As with many wild animals, while it may be uncommon to encounter them and be attacked in their own wild territories, when they start to make themselves at home around humans, they become especially dangerous and a true threat to people living in the area. And, according to Tanana resident and dog trainer James Roberts, bears are often a threat to dogs:

I bring my rifle with me in case we run into a bear. Black bears are all around. I’ve had them steal pups from me. Black bear’ll come by and he’ll just snack on five or six at a time.

So, yes, black bears are a threat, in more ways than one.

Yukon Men airs on the Discovery Channel on Friday nights at 10/9c.

Want to read more about Yukon Men? Search “Yukon Men” right here on Huliq!

Image: Discovery Channel

Video: Discovery Channel/Yukon Men


Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on
the bear concern at the dump is created by the people concerned! the open dump containing typical trash that brings in the bears is the fault of the people. I would think the citizens of town should be respondsible enough to simply manage the dump to aviod rather than attract bears. Unmanaged dumps and bear problems are decades old. Simple camping technques include keeping the camp site clear of bear attractants....Daaaa! Rather than shoot the bear, scale down the size of the dump, clean up the area a little .............. rather than practice poor, irresponsible behavior.

Submitted by coyotejoe (not verified) on
I've been reserving judgement as I watched the first 5 episodes but the bear thing is just too much. The young man is hauling rotten meat out of his freezer, has to get rid of it because he doesn't want the odor to attract bears to his home. So he takes it to the dump, just like everyone else and oh my gosh there's a bear at the dump! Of course there's a bear at the dump. If I wanted to shoot a bear the dump is always the first place I'd look for one. LOL

Submitted by Mississippi&Colorado (not verified) on
Dealing with a bear and wolf population is tough and nobody living off the land wants to harvest them without overwhelming cause, but occasionally it will have to be done. The dump in this case is more likely to prevent human loss of life, and bear loss of life for that matter. The bears that stay away when they smell humans and human garbage are the ones you want to reproduce, not the ones that have no fear. For sake of example, lets change the bear or wolf into a colony of aggressive "killer bees" that keep coming back and threatening you, your neighbors, and everyone's animals. They keep coming back because you make it warmer. Isn't it better to address the ones that come too close and leave the others alone? No way you can stop creating heat or garbage, and bees (or bears) have to be dealt with when they threaten human lives.

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