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Minimor

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I just talked to a friend that lives up north. In the last letter I had from her (about 2 or 2 1/2 weeks ago) she had mentioned that there were a few bears around her area. There are no berries in the bush, so the bears are coming out to find food.

Early this morning she opened the door, & there was a bear.
Last evening he (or a look alike close associate!!) was in town, which is half a mile from my friend's place. There is a live trap set up at her neighbor's place, but the bear isn't going there.... She listened, and could hear her Minis racing around their pastures. She called Natural Resources & an officer came out. By then the bear had wandered off. She told the warden she'd like a trap, but it turns out they only have the one, which is at the neighbor's. Also turns out that trap has been freshly painted--she said no wonder they aren't catching any bears in it, if it's reeking of fresh paint. Warden did leave them some noise shells to fire off to scare the bear away.

When she did chores this morning my friend made her husband come along with the gun, but the bear was gone. What she did find, though, is a spot where the bear had tried to dig under her fence. The ground is rock hard so he didn't get too far, but he left some impressive claw marks in the dirt.

Game warden said if they do catch a bear they haul him 20 miles away & turn him loose. Isn't that a bit close??? Game warden also suggested that they should just take care of this problem on their own--SSS! Unfortunately they do have neighbors on 3 sides & the highway on the 4th side of them, so it's a bit difficult to have a clear, safe shot. RCMP say they are technically inside town limits & cannot shoot.

Last fall there was a bear attack not too far from where my friend lives--a fellow was out fencing. It was a real windy day & he didn't hear the bear come up behind him--it attacked him & tore his arm up. The fellow got away by climbing a tree. This year, in the eastern part of the province there have been 2 bear attacks in the past month or so. First one was fatal. The fellow was picking wild plums, and was charged by the bear. It killed him. Game wardens got that bear. The second case, the bear attacked a dog. When the owner went to try & save the dog, the bear turned on him...this was right in the fellow's back yard. My friend said the bears have been chasing her dog (Pyr).

We have bears in the forest here, but so far they've been staying in the bush & not venturing the 2 miles across open country to come here. We'd been thinking we'd go down to the bush & see if we could pick some chokecherries, but have now decided we will leave the berries for the bears this year!!
 

Mona

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We had a bear right in our yard almost a month ago too. It was VERY brave! Our dog "Bear", a Pyr, was barking and keeping about 30' behind it, and all it did was WALK! Even when we went outside onto the deck and hollered at it, it did not break it's pace...never even ran! Scary to think what may have happened though if the dog would not have been here. He was only an 8 month old pup, so i think he did well for his age. We have not ever had outside dogs before, so not sure if we have ever had bears here or not, but it scares me to think of the damage that might have resulted.

Not sure if you saw in an earlier post of mine, there was a Miniature Horse in Kenora that was recently killed by a black bear, and that same bear, at that same time, also killed another small farm animal...I can't remember if it was a goat or a sheep, and also injured one or two other farm animals.

As for the live traps, I think they need to do away with those for awhile. They haul them off and they come right back!! My Mom lives in a trailer park in Kenora, and they have had LOTS of trouble with bears. One morning a couple weeks ago, she awoke to some banging outside, to see a bear in her garbage that she had set out the night before for garbage pick-up in the morning. This was at 7:00am, and only a week before school started again, so is scary to think that kids would be outside waiting for school buses not much later than that!

Anyway, the bear in her garbage had an ear tag...that means it was already caught and released at one time, and now it was back!
 

Minimor

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Oh, Mona, I missed your post about the Kenora Mini getting killed by the bear!

Ya, if they move the bears they do seem to come right back, or else they become a problem in the new area. I guess this year theya re hungry enough to be very bold.

If our dog gets barking in the night I always go out to check--around here it could be a neighbors dog, fox, coyotes or (not lately, thank goodness) timberwolf or big cat. One night last week, though, I went out with the light, got half way to the barn & thought, What if it's a bear this time?? This year I shouldn't assume anything!
 

SWA

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Hi,

Ok, ok, I know I said I wasn't gonna post anymore (
) but....


this topic is of importance to me too, in that we went out to check on how things are coming along with our new place this weekend, and lo and behold, we pull into our driveway (well, beginnings on one
), and
this huge bear waddles across the front of the path in front right in front of us.


At first I was like...WHOA...TOO COOL!


Then it hit me...that thing's BIGGER'n my minies


Ok...so how do we best protect against the wildlife area that we are be moving into? One of the things that quickly attracted us to this particular spot, is that we are right in the backside of the Ocala National Forest, right at the northern "triangle" tip of Lake County, bordering the Marion & Volusia County lines.

We expected the wildlife of deer knowingly, because the first time hubby and our son drove out to look at the land there, as they drove up a huge (for Florida) buck stood right there in the spot where our new house is now. So we were excite about that. But, then this weekend, we came face to face with the REAL "reality" of "wildlife" overall.

Outside of our 2 years in Maine, Florida is all I've ever known, and have lived in what I always considered "out in the boonies" for the most part. We see the occassional fox, deer, and even bobcats now and then. Even gators...had one "nesting" in the pond banks behind one of our barns a couple months ago.
But, this was THE very first time I have ever seen a real live BEAR
... short of going to the Sanford Zoo.


Then to not only cross it's path, but it be right smack dab in the middle of our new makings of a "front yard"...


Uhhhhh.... um.... ok????


What kind of really BIG dog, (horse friendly preferrably) would be wise to consider for guarding our "pasture babies" against "the local elements" they'll likely soon encounter???


Would a "Boxer" be ok? A "Dobie"??? A Bull Mastiff????


Something short haired, maybe??? Florida gets so hot, especially in the summer, plus we'll are going to be "in the woods", literally....so keeping them tick free and comfy would be easiest with short haired breeds. But, what would be in that category, that would be best candidates for the job too??? Any help is deeply appreciated.
 
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justaboutgeese

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Our bear problems here in Ontario are getting progressively worse. This is the result of our spring bear hunt closing a few years back. Hunters do not come in large numbers for fall bear hunts (the bears are not pretty in the fall with their pelts all rubbed bald in places). Since we do not have one they go to neighboring provinces where the hunt continues as normal. We now have bears in large numbers in places that have never seen bears before. As the bears start to mature the females are staying and the mature boars drive off all of the young males. These young males are experts at causing trouble wherever they end up. Many of the trapped bears are released in a swamp about twenty miles northeast of here. The ministry said last year that its already well beyond the carrying capacity but they have no other place to take them. The saga continues.
 

SWA

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Mona, I have missed alot too these past many weeks, and I'm so sorry to hear of your loss in Kenora. This has me even more concerned now too, with bringing the realism of dangers of wildlife. We are, I guess, invading their territory, now that I think of it. The land we bought out in Paisley, FL, has never been "occupied" before us. We are literally moving in on the forest there. Now, I'm really concerned. Gosh, I never really thought just how serious this could "potentially" become for the safety of our horses.

We have two "house dogs", too, and no way could they "fend off" a bear. An "intruder" of the human kind, absolutely, and without hesitation...but a BEAR???
 

justaboutgeese

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Bears and dogs are a good combination, Bears do not like things that challenge them. The danger is if the dogs get the bear cornered then the bear wins.
 

Nancy G

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As many forum members will remember, my precious Mundy was killed by a big black bear right behind our house. It was maybe 5 years ago & happened around 11 PM. That bear had no fear of me whatsoever. The following year, I bought a Maremma guardian dog. They are wonderful with the horses. Maremmas are very protective of their flock or herd & of their family members. Great dogs for livestock protection.

We live in central Pennsylvania.

A story of Mundy & the bear can be read @ http://community.webtv.net/ggmini/ITsAMIRACLE

 

Minimor

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Nancy, I did tell my friend about Mundy--I told her sometimes bears do kill Minis, and so she shouldn't take any chances.

The game warden told her to put the horses in the small corrals nearest the house, but she's afraid that if the bear did go after them in those small corrals, the horses would have no chance at all to get away. She thought they might have a little more chance if they're in a bigger area--that would depend, I suppose, on how badly the bear wanted to get one of them. Someone had also told her about a Percheron colt (weanling) that got killed by a bear.

One thing to remember about the average dog (not talking the guardian breeds, just your average family pet)--a dog is very good at finding a bear, irritating it into chasing him, then running straight back to its master with the bear in hot pursuit!
 

MeadowRidge Farm

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I live very close to the Nicolet National Forest, and we do have a large bear population in our area. About 2 months ago, we had a bear,guessed weight was about 450#'s walking between our neighbors who live about 1/4 mile from us on a hyway, crossing the raod and wondering along our yearling pasture fence, over to our creek. This went on for about 2 weeks, I called the DNR headquarters and was told..they couldnt bring a trap out because they also one had one, which was in use. I also told them that we would take things into our own hands if he attacked any of our horses..I was told I could get fined for shooting a bear!!!! They left me with a number to call in case of a emergency (yeah right..like they would get here fast enough!!) eventually the bear left our area. But I really have to credit our donkeys for that..they would bray up a storm, and when the bear came within a few feet of the fenceline they would all go running over and apparently breyed loud enough to scare the bear away. Our neighbor always knew when the bear was around because he heard my donkeys. A close friend of mine wo lives about 10 miles from us, did have a bear attack and kill one of her Arabian mares last year, the mare was ready to foal in about 2 weeks, this bear did get away, but about 1 month later, they almost had a second horse attacked. He got scratched up quit a bit, but did live. My horses are kept close to our barn at night, with lights and cameras on, which is directly behind our house. My young ones all go into stalls at night. I am just afraid to take any chances. Corinne
 

Mona

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Here is a link to one of the articles written about the bear killing the mini in Kenora.

These animals were INSIDE a barn! I too feel that my horses would have a better chance of being killed in their large pastures, where they have room to run for awhile, whereas in a small corral or stall, they are like sitting ducks, with nowhere to go if a bear did come. I HATE bears, and am so scared of them!!

Tanya, I think some good dogs for you would be Great Pyrenees, Anatolian Shepherds and as Nancy said, Maremas.
 

Mona

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Also, while on the subject of bears around here...I took these photos of some "dump" bears a few weeks ago in Sioux Narrows(about 45 minutes out of Kenora). My husband estimated them to weigh between 600-700 pounds, which is HUGE for a black bear! No way would the bears in the wild depending soley on berries and vegetation look like this! LOL.

Anyway, my Mom also told me that just recently, the MNR shot a bear with a tranquillizer gun at Barsky's dum in Kenora, and they weighed it up while it was out, and it weighed in at 743 pounds or something like that!! It was HUGE!





 

Ferrah

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WOW I have never seen a bear that big before! Lucky for where we live we are in a "sort of" suburban "sort of" rural neighborhood and almost everyone around here has a large dog (not us though). Our back neighbors have a very good mastiff collie X (odd combo I know) and he does a fantastic job at keeping bears away froum the surrounding four properties. Anytime he barks its because there is a bear, strange dog or fox coming into his area, this has saved my bunny from attacks numerous times. The large dog population around here keeps the bears pretty much away. We see them occasionally but they are always very shy and take off as soon as they see a person. Not to say that they couldn't be a threat, but at least they have a healthy fear of humans!
 

[email protected]

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How scary!

I have a fit when I see a coyote! I've been known to take off after them (and stray dogs). I can't imagine seeing a bear out here. They are near by, but fortunately we haven't had one on the porch or bothering the horses.

I would definitely invest in a LGD - they are well known for their natural abilities. Just make sure you get one from a reputable breeder and the dog has been socialized with all the types of livestock, pets you have.

We tried a 4 month old puppy that wasn't use to minis, cats or chickens - so she was afraid of the horses, and thought the cats/chicken were toys - one dead chicken and she went back to the breeder!
 

justaboutgeese

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Until very recently the worlds record for a black bear was 650 pounds, it came from new york. The new record topped it by a few pounds but not much. A black bear is nothing but pure muscle and the average barn door would be no match for a determined bear. They get in cars by folding the doors like the top of a sardine can. Bears are a problem many people have and there really is no good solution to cure it. Shooting a bear just because its there is against the law, you can only act if the bear is actually "worrying" (the legal term) your livestock or your family. The only good thing is the weather is getting cooler and they will babysit themselves (atleast in the northern areas) for the winter. Depending on game wardens or local police is not a viable solution. The response time especially in rural areas means when the danger presents itself it will only be your own resources you can depend on.Keep alert, keep your animals close and protect them and yourselves by whatever means you have at your disposal.
 

Minimor

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Oh, Mona, that is one big, obese bear!

The bear that killed the fellow in eastern Manitoba a couple weeks ago was supposed to be a yearling male--I forget what weight they said it was, but it was BIG for a yearling black bear.

A couple years ago a car hit & killed one on the TransCanada Hwy just east of here, at Carberry, & that one weighed 600 lbs. Don't know what it had been feeding on.

'Geese, there'd be no problem with shooting the bear then, for me, just having the bear come around would be plenty "worrying" for me!


One fellow on the news (also in eastern Manitoba) said he's had a lot of trouble with bears wrecking his bee hives this fall--he's shot 7 of them already as of a couple weeks ago, and that's an unusual number.
 

ChrystalPaths

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Geese is on the money with his advice. We do have bear around here. Not as huge as that big guy but intimidating none the less.

There seem to be more being seen lately. I think it is the lack of berries this year. Just too dry here in NY.

Vic, a question, should a bear come too close and being that I am out in eastbum#[email protected]%egypt, where should you shoot to kill? What caliber weapon?

I was leaving my girls out until a few days ago when I saw bear tracks by the apple tree just about 100 yds from the girls down paddock.
Now they come in every nite!
 

justaboutgeese

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If it becomes necessary to shoot at a bear use a "heavy" .30 caliber rifle. By heavy I would use a 30.06, 30-40, 303, 308, even a 30-30 would do it. Stay away from the very old calibers that do not have alot of power. Do not try to be a super hero and get to with fifty feet of the animal before shooting. Be mindful of where the bear is facing when its shot. It is common for any animal to "do a short sprint" when its hit. If the bear is facing you when its hit guess where the sprint is going to take it. Unless you are positive of a killing head shot I would recommend hitting the bear high in the shoulders (looking at it from the side) This will anchor the bear in one spot and stop any chasing the bear might be doing allowing for you to make a second shot at a still target. Just for information purposes the term "worring" applies to the animals not you. Attempting to gain entry to your house barn etc. A bear or dog will have the animals agitated at which point the law allows you to protect life and property. I have to edit this to clarify high in the shoulder. The object is to disable the bear, a shot through the shoulder blades will put the animal down (but still very much alive) a shot higher will hit the spine and disable the animals back and hindquarters, again disabling the animal . if the shot is high it will be a clean miss. Two more points, when you pick up a firearm the object is to destroy the animal as quickly as possible in a humane way. the second point is be prepared for the noise a bear makes when it is hit. Many people find it very unnerving.
 
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SWA

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Geese, thankfully, we have a 30.06, as well as a 44magnum. I don't like guns, AT ALL, but if necessary, like a bear...


Mona, thank you so much. Hubby and I have been talking quite seriously about this. Once we are able to, we definately will be getting a BIG DOG. My main concern, for the dog, though, is with the heat for Florida, and being in "the woods", with tick prone, likely, long haired breeds, might be miserable for them. We do hope to find a big dog breed though, that would be a short haired coat possibly??? I dunno...much research to do. We have a good ways to go before we could bring one into our family, so that gives us a little time at least, to appropriately look into what breed would be a good choice, on behalf of the dog, as well as protection for the farm.

We looked at the Great Swiss Mountain Dog, briefly and by a pic or two we've seen, it "looks" like their coat "may" be shorter than the pyrenees, and maremas. Although, those maremas are SOOOOOO ADORABLE!!!
Oh my gosh! THe puppy pics we saw, 'so far" of the maremas....well, I better watch myself, cause I'd be taken 'em all in.


A couple others we might look further into are Weimerieners, Boxers, and Rhodesian Ridgebacks. We don't know for sure yet...much to research on each of them first. Plus, much to do with the "preparedness" to accommodate a dog that big too....not to mention getting the place "horsified" also, LOL. I like that word, "horsified"...LOL. (HUGS SANDII).


Well...lots of planning to get busy with yet...


Keep safe everyone...

Oh, Nancy, oh my gosh, I remember that about your sweet precious Mundy. My heart cries for you all over again.
{{{HUGS&PRAYERS}}}
 

Minimor

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Tanya, the Anatolian Shepherds are short haired--at least shorter haired than a Pyr or Maremmas--so they might do better in the heat?

'Geese, the truth is, if a bear is in my yard & I shoot it, it's pretty hard to prove that it wasn't threatening me or mine....
 

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