Summer is a busy time for bears across New York State, and the Department of Environmental Conservation is encouraging people to avoid conflicts and interactions with bears.

As we enter the summer months here in the Hudson Valley, we will be seeing all sorts of creatures roaming around. There's a chance one of those creatures is a bear who's looking for some food. During the summer, younger bears will break away from their family groups.

Breeding bears will be in search of a mate, and all bears will forage for food to gain the necessary fat to make it through the next winter. Obviously, the increase of activity among the bears will increase the likelihood of potential for human-bear conflicts, when the bear finds food near people.

People who live in areas of the state and Hudson Valley where bears are more present should take a few simple steps this summer to protect their neighborhoods and bears from harm.

Be sure to secure your garbage cans indoors or in a locked outbuilding. Remove birdfeeders, and make sure to clean grease off your grills. Residents should also secure livestock food and don't feed their pets outdoors.

Following these steps will help protect the bears from putting themselves into a bad situation, and obviously, you won't have to deal with a bear in your yard. It's kind of scary when a hungry bear comes walking up your sidewalk looking for a snack. It happened once while I was on vacation, and even though we had everything secured, the bear still got what he wanted.

Creatures Emerging From Hibernation in the Hudson Valley

There are many different creatures that hibernate during those colder months, like other mammals, reptiles, amphibians, and insects according to New York State Parks Department.

See what sort of animals could be waking up in your Hudson Valley neighborhood in March and April.

The Birds Are Back in Town

Find out which birds return to the Hudson Valley in the spring.