Warm temperatures and early spring conditions have led to reports of bears in and around Fernie.

Banff National Park photo taken March 19

Bears will wake from hibernation earlier than usual this year with spring conditions continuing in the valley.

Bears hibernating in the valley have sensed the spring-like temperatures and are searching for food, which would create potential for conflict. Of course there’s no natural food available, so then (bears) resort to human food sources — garbage, recycling, bird seed, barbecue grease, all that stuff.

The spring weather is a chance to remind residents to keep their garbage and barbecues secured year-round and to remove bird seed from feeders. More safe bear-management practices can be viewed at www.bearsmart.com.

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