North Mountain View abuts prime habitat for local black bears, and state biologists say unsecured dumpsters can become irresistible lures for the animals.
Last week, a bear was spotted rooting through a green metal bin near Mumford Street. They’re also seen in Davis Park and Mountain View Lions Park. The Municipality of Anchorage keeps maps tracing bear habitats and areas of frequent encounters with humans: Both maps indicate the woods just to the north of Mountain View are a hotbed of bear activity. While Jessy Coltrane, a biologist with the state Department of Fish and Game, said she hasn’t yet heard any reports of bears in the area this spring, she expected that to change.
“It is just a matter of time,” she wrote in an email Wednesday.
If a bear is caught getting into an unsecured dumpster, she said the state considers it “negligent feeding of wildlife.” It could cost the owner $310.
“We regularly cite people for this violation,” she wrote.
Coltrane said the department encourages people to use bear-proof containers and — if the dumpster keeps overflowing — to increase the dumping schedule.