Since I put my feeders high up with a pulley system I have had no problems.  Bears still come and go.

Ed Green

-----Original Message-----
From: Vermont Birds [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Kent McFarland
Sent: Wednesday, May 18, 2016 11:18 AM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: [VTBIRD] Bird feeding and Bear

Hi Folks,
There have been some recent discussions on the Upper Valley bird list about bird feeding and bear, specifically, in regards to the law about bear feeding. This morning I was able to exchange emails with Mark Scott, Director of Wildlife at the Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department. Mark was extremely helpful in clarifying the law and the departments suggestions in regards to bird feeders.

Here is what I learned from Mark:

Is it illegal to feed birds in any season in Vermont?
No. People who feed birds and have a bear visiting their feeder will not be cited with a wildlife violation unless they have been contacted by a state game warden to remove their bird feeder or other planted unnatural food source and fail to do so.

What are the suggested bird feeding periods from the VT Fish and Wildlife Department?
The VFWD strongly recommends now that people stop feeding birds who live in an area where bears are known to travel or are getting recent reports of bears in the area they live. VFWD usually advise people to take the bird feeders down from April through November. However in mild winters such as we just encountered, some bears who don’t den or awaken from their den due to warm weather or a disturbance, may be searching for food all winter.
Generally if we have six inches of snow on the ground, bears have a difficult time finding wild foods and will den.

 You can find more information on the VFWD "Living with Black Bears" web page at

I hope this information helps. We certainly do not want to create any nuisance bears through bird feeding, so please do consider all the information.



Kent McFarland
Vermont Center for Ecostudies
PO Box 420 | Norwich, Vermont 05055
802.649.1431 x2