Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2016 - 26

Paul Esson

The fox is, by nature furtive and reclusive. But like other wildiife, "is not coming around your house because he enjoys your company.
It's looking for food, water or shelter," according to Chuck Waters of the Georgia Department of Natural Resources.

Until recently, Lisa Powley had only
seen one black bear in her hometown of Free Union, Virginia, a
tiny community of fewer than 200
people near Charlottesville. That
changed last summer, when neighbors began swapping stories. One
witnessed a bear knocking over
the family grill on the patio, then
looked up to see a second one on
the hillside. The homeowner tried
to scare it off by making a loud
noise, but the creature chased him
back into the house, leaving paw
prints on the door. One night another neighbor opened her window
and came nose-to-nose with a bear.
Powley, 54, was nervous but intrigued. So she and her uncle drove
to the community hall where a few
adolescent bears had been spotted. At dusk, one, then another,
emerged from the woods, ambled
around the building, then jumped
on the dumpster and began yanking out trash.
26 BlueRidgeCountry.com

"...somebody's
gotta get rid
of these bears.
Somebody's
gonna get
hurt."
"I was just amazed," Powley recalls. "I'd never been that close to
a bear in my life. It was really exciting but at the same time, I was
a little frightened because there
are elderly people in the neighborhood-my parents being some of
them-and then we've got a lot of
young children."
Later, when Powley spotted a cub
in the road, she knew it was time to
call in the experts. At a town meet-

ing, 80 people showed up to hear
a spokesperson from the Virginia
Department of Game and Inland
Fisheries offer advice on how not to
attract bears to their homes.
"It made me feel a lot better, that
they don't want me," Powley says.
"They just want what we have: our
garbage."

More of Us, More of Them

More and more Blue Ridge residents
are seeing an influx of wild animals
in populated subdivisions and urban parks. Bears boldly raid trashcans, turkeys strut through busy
neighborhoods, and deer show up
in surprising numbers. But why?
Some experts say it's because humans are moving into spaces where
wildlife have lived-without us-
for decades. Other conservationists
point to habitat destruction that
forces the animals to search for new
homes, while some insist that manmade parks and other green spaces


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Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2016

Contents
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2016 - Intro
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2016 - Cover1
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2016 - Cover2
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2016 - 3
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2016 - Contents
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2016 - 5
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2016 - 6
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2016 - 7
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2016 - 8
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2016 - 9
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2016 - 10
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2016 - 11
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2016 - 12
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2016 - 13
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2016 - 14
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2016 - 15
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2016 - 16
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2016 - 17
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2016 - 18
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2016 - 19
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2016 - 20
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2016 - 21
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2016 - 22
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2016 - 23
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2016 - 24
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2016 - 25
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2016 - 26
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2016 - 27
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2016 - 28
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2016 - 29
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2016 - 30
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2016 - 31
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2016 - 32
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2016 - 33
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2016 - 34
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2016 - 35
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2016 - 36
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2016 - 37
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Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2016 - Cover3
Blue Ridge Country - November/December 2016 - Cover4
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