Bear Smart Durango has collected and compiled data on bear activity and human-bear conflict since 2007. Earlier efforts were geared towards defining and better understanding areas of our community that were experiencing bear activity and issues and to inform policy makers on human and bear issues.
In time, monthly reports and year-end summaries of this information were produced and distributed to policy makers and elected officials with the city and county, among others. GIS-based maps of bear sightings and incidents, (bears in trash or fruit trees, for example), were produced by the City of Durango GIS Department, La Plata County GIS Department and eventually by Ecosphere Environmental Services.
Aspects of the monitoring and reporting programs include: Monthly reports of bear sightings and incidents, year-end summary reports of sightings and incidents along with GIS mapping and monitoring bear activity via remote cameras.
In 2012, Bear Smart Durango called in 638 violations of the city wildlife ordinance to city law enforcement and they issued 175 written warnings and two citations. No group or government agency monitors bear-strewn trash in the county and in 2012 the Sheriff’s Department issued two written warnings and no citations.