Bear Update Working with DNR
While we have always had sightings of bears since the inception of Barefoot, most recently the sightings and personal encounters have increased to a point that the safety of our residents is a serious concern. For this reason, we have enlisted the services of DNR (Department of Natural Resources) to develop a plan of action that would assist with this growing concern.
Robin McCord, Lifestyle Director, has agreed to take on the initiative of being the point person with DNR. She met with them at length on Monday, January 5. Per that discussion, the following actions will be taken. NOTE: it may take up to a month or two for the plan to work, so it is IMPERATIVE that ALL residents assist with this process by adhering to DNR’s requests. These are DNR’s requests, not Ponderosa’s or the Board’s. For those that rent out their facility, it is your responsibility to make sure your renters are aware of and adhere to these requests.
At this point, the bears are not hibernating as they have done in the past due to the fluctuation in weather temperatures. With colder temperatures on the way, they may choose to hibernate within this month, in which case, it could be necessary to continue this process through Spring.
Multi-Family Communities – Please remember to secure the compactor door in the closed position once trash has been deposited. It is suggested that you take your trash to the compactor during daylight hours.
Bird feeders – while it is nice to watch birds, please remove all food from them for the next few months.
Grills – clean after each use.
Trash – do not leave trash cans outside, rather place them in your garage or other area that a bear cannot get into. Keep in mind that bears are very clever and bungee cords/straps will not deter them. Do not put trash out on the curb until Thursday morning for pick-up. We understand that this may be an inconvenience for some, but the safety of our residents is more important. It is recommended to use ammonia around and in your trash can.
Pet Food – do not leave outside for any reason.
NOTE: all of the items mentioned above have been shared with you before, but residents continue to ignore them. Again, these are requests from DNR. For EVERYONE”S safety, please take this seriously and assist us with your full cooperation.
With food sources cut off, especially at the Residents’ Club, the bears may become more aggressive as they search for alternative food. Dogs seem to be attracting them. We understand that many of our residents have pets and walk them at all hours of the day. Always be on alert, take a flash light with you during dark hours. Dogs should always be on a leash. Refrain from taking your dog to the back of the Residents’ Club property (behind the tennis courts) during dark hours. If you do so, you are doing so at your own risk.
Tracking of Bears
Again, with food sources cut off, bears may become more visible within the actual residential communities. To assist DNR with tracking the bears’ travel patterns, any sightings should be reported to Robin McCord via email at
. Please include the day, time and location/address of sighting, and include a picture when feasible. DO NOT put yourself at risk to take a picture. The purpose of the picture is to determine the number of different bears that we may have roaming the property. All of this tracking information will play an important role should DNR decide that ‘trapping of the bears’ is necessary.
DNR has placed a few trail cameras in a specific location to assist with tracking the bears behavior.
Public Safety Director Jay Fernandez, would like any bear sightings reported to the police as well. The police will dispatch an officer to the area to make sure that there is no threat to humans or animals. Please call the North Myrtle Beach Police Department at 843-280-5511 if you should see a bear.
We know that not all residents are included in our database, so they may not receive this email. We ask that you assist us by talking about these initiatives with all of your neighbors, full and part-time. If you are a neighborhood rep, please forward to your database.
For the Board of Directors
Kelly White, CMCA, AMS