Hunt/Fish: Aspen Bear Conflicts Rise 1,200%

Written by Doug Giles on February 26, 2013

Screen Shot 2013-02-26 at 9.52.17 AMAspen’s got a real bear of a problem. All puns aside, the Colorado city is getting a fair amount of trouble from their new, furry neighbors. According to the Aspen Times, the Aspen Police Department recently released their annual crime statistics report and bears headed the top of the list. A sleepy town that doesn’t see much crime, Aspen instead recorded an eye-popping 1,040 bear calls–compared to just 82 in 2008.

“The bears took up a huge amount of time and resources,” said Police Chief Richard Pryor. “At the same time, we felt we really had good cooperation from the community, and people did try to make a difference in their habits in terms of trash and using the right containers.”

The Aspen Police Department certainly deserves a pat on the back. Any location where bear encounters vastly outnumber crime is definitely a safe place, at least from criminals. But where have all the bears come from?

Apparently a spring drought and the resulting lack of food drove the animals from their native habitat into Aspen.

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