Bear Facts for Homeowners:

  • Taking steps to avoid attracting bears with food or garbage is the best way to prevent black bears from becoming a nuisance near your home.
  • Use bear-resistant garbage containers if you live in an area frequented by black bears. They offer the best protection.

  • Store all garbage in containers with tight-fitting lids and place them along the inside walls of your garage or in the basement, a sturdy shed or other secure area.

  • Wash garbage containers with a disinfectant solution regularly to remove odors.

  • Put out garbage on collection day, not the night before.

  • Clean up after pets. If you feed them outside, do so during daylight hours only. Pick up any leftover food and remove bowls immediately after they have finished.

  • Clean outdoor grills and utensils thoroughly after each use and store grills securely. Grease and food residue attract bears.

  • Do not place meat or any sweet foods in compost piles.

  • Avoid feeding birds if you live in an area frequented by black bears. Birdseed attracts bears. If you choose to feed birds, do so during daylight hours only between December 1 and April 1, when bears are least active. Suspend feeder from a free-hanging wire, making sure the bottom is at least 10 feet off the ground. Bring feeder indoors at night. Clean up spilled seeds and shells.

  • Pick up any fruit or nuts that fall from trees and discard it in garbage containers with tight-fitting lids.

  • Consider installing electric fencing to protect crops, beehives and small livestock if you live in an area frequented by black bears.


For further bear information, visit the following websites:



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Andover Township Police Department
134 Newton Sparta Road   |   Newton, New Jersey 07860
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