New Hampshire Fish and Game warning people about black bears coming out of hibernation


Photo courtesy of Down East Magazine

Collin DeMarco

The New Hampshire Fish and Game department urges people to use caution in and around the woods this time of year towards the end of march and the month of April when black bears are coming out of hibernation. NH Fish and Game also would like people to use proper safety techniques.


A lot of people ask if black bears are dangerous. Yes Black bears are dangerous and are capable of killing people, but only when provoked do they become dangerous. According to the New Hampshire Fish and Game “The last time someone was killed in New Hampshire by a black bear was 1784.” 


Black bears are the only kind of bears that live in New Hampshire. If you see a bear clap your hands and make noise to let the bear know you are there. If the bear starts slapping its paws on the ground, do not run. That will show weakness. Instead, maintain eye contact and stay put and speak in a calm soft voice. This will not only let the bear know you’re not there to hurt it. It also tells the bear that you’re showing no signs of weakness. Never run when you see a bear. Stand your ground because a bear can out-run you, out-swim you, and out-climb you. If you are attacked by a bear, never run, fight back.


How do you keep bears away from your campsite? Keep a clean camp, when you are not using any food or condiments put them in a bear proof box or cooler. You can also put them in a bag ten feet up in a tree, but make sure it’s hanging 4 feet down from the branch and four feet away from the tree on the branch. Just in case the bear climbs up the tree it still can not get to the food.