Black Bears Released Back Into Wild Near Incline Village - KTVN Channel 2 - Reno Tahoe News Weather, Video -

Black Bears Released Back Into Wild Near Incline Village

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It was with a lot of clattering, dogs barking, and gun shots that two black bears made their way home to Spooner Summit Wednesday morning. Not the fanfare most would ask for.
In fact, it scared them near to death. But that was the point. Because officials say that scaring them will save their lives.

"We are trying to scare them," said Game Biologist Carl Lackey. "We want them to associate a bad experience with people and with the dogs."

They use Karilean Bear Dogs, paintball guns and pepper spray to chase the bears off, hoping they won't come back. And while a one-year-old black bear picked up in Incline Village was quick to run off and up a tree, an 8-year old, also picked up in Incline Village yesterday, was happy to hang around for nearly a half hour after the trap door was opened.

"That's because she's been through this before," Lackey said. "We picked up this bear three years ago and now we're re-tagged her ear so we can continue to follow her. She's been through this before. She knows the dogs will be chasing her when she comes out. And that's good."

They are hoping to change behavior and they want the bears to feel threatened.

"We won't be able to keep all of the bears out of Incline Village where there's so much available food, but hope they are scared. Once they get up in a tree we stop because for a bear a tree is a safe place to be," Lackey says.

This month has been declared Bear Logic month. The Nevada Department of Wildlife is launching a big educational campaign to help people see that being nice to bears is not good for them. They're acquiring a new family bear trap to transport cubs with mothers when they need to. But they are hoping they won't have much use for it.

The best advice if you do encounter a bear, is to contact the Nevada Department of Wildlife immediately. Call (775) 688-BEAR. And for more tips and information go to http://www.ndow.org/Nevada_Wildlife/Bear_Logic/
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