Vermont Public is independent, community-supported media, serving Vermont with trusted, relevant and essential information. We share stories that bring people together, from every corner of our region. New to Vermont Public? Start here.

© 2024 Vermont Public | 365 Troy Ave. Colchester, VT 05446

Public Files:
WVTI · WOXM · WVBA · WVNK · WVTQ · WVTX
WVPR · WRVT · WOXR · WNCH · WVPA
WVPS · WVXR · WETK · WVTB · WVER
WVER-FM · WVLR-FM · WBTN-FM

For assistance accessing our public files, please contact hello@vermontpublic.org or call 802-655-9451.
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00
0:00
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Officials share composting advice amid increased reports of bears near Vermont homes

A large black bear facing the edge of a forest looks back at the camera.
John Hall / Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department
/
Courtesy
Officials say reducing food odors, especially from compost, can help keep reduce bear visits in human-occupied areas.

There’s been an uptick in reports of bears venturing near homes in search of food, according to the Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department.

Jaclyn Comeau is a black bear biologist with the agency.

“We’ve been, for the past four, five years, more consistently getting reports of bears in what we would consider more urban-dominated spaces," Comeau said. "So really, all Vermonters need to think of themselves as living in bear country."

More from Vermont Public: Bears are waking from hibernation weeks early across Vermont

One thing that attracts them? Compost. That's why state officials are sharing pointers on how to compost food scraps to reduce food odor and help keep bears away.

“If you want to compost your food scraps at home, it takes more than just dumping them in a pile at the edge of your yard," Comeau said. "You do need to kind of create the right compost recipe.”

The agency recommends a recipe that incorporates brown material, such as wood chips or dry leaves, into the compost.

Bones and meat should be thrown in the garbage. They also recommend regularly mixing or turning over your compost to incorporate oxygen and help with odors.

Housing your compost in a bear-proof tumbler or hard, durable container will also make it less accessible to the animals.

Have questions, comments or tips? Send us a message.

Samantha Watson is a senior at the University of Vermont.
Latest Stories