Press "Enter" to skip to content

Think you found a bear den? Leave it alone

As temperatures fall and food sources become less abundant, many bears in Virginia will enter a winter den. Other bears will greatly reduce their movements during but may remain active throughout the season, according to a news release from the Virginia Department of Wildlife Resources.

Tips to avoid a den

Avoid hiking in dense brushy thickets or young cutover timber stands. If you must work in these areas, be mindful of brush piles, gullies with debris piles, or storm damage areas with thickets of limbs/root balls.

Always maintain your dog on a leash to avoid a dog-bear encounter at a den site.

When burning a brush or debris pile on your property, look around the entire pile for signs of digging (fresh dirt, holes) or entry routes into the pile.

If you notice large, excavated holes or fresh trails into debris or brush piles, listen closely for the sound of cubs from a distance of at least 30 feet away. They often emit a high-pitched cry or “squall.”

To prevent a bea...

To view the rest of this article, you must log in. If you do not have an account with us, please subscribe here.