Understanding Habituation: Habituation is a term often used to describe the behaviour of a garbage bear, but what does it actually mean?
By definition in Webster’s Dictionary , habituation is “decrease in responsiveness upon repeated exposure to a stimulus.”
The repeated stimulus would be repeated expose to unsecured garbage thus decreasing the bears natural fear of humans and increase their tolerance of us. This is unnatural and has potentially dangerous implications for us, our pets, our children and the bears.
A habituated garbage bear is less likely to be scared off by our usual tactics and may be unfazed by loud noises. At this point, the bear considers garbage to be their most prize possession and are reluctant to walk away without a very good reason. This could lead to unpredictable, defensive and dangerous behaviour.
This is completely preventable. If we learn to properly stash our trash, then the bears will never have the opportunity to become habituated to it.
We are asking everyone who has a garage to please use it. If you have a shed, that is the next best thing. If you are unable to store your garbage securely, reach out to us. We have many tricks and tips up our sleeve to help us coexist with bears and reduce human-wildlife conflicts.
Please do your part to prevent garbage bear habituation.
Contact us: firstname.lastname@example.org
Samantha Webb, BSc, RVT, WR
Wild Wise Community Coordinator
BE WILD WISE
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