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Human-Bear Conflict Reduction Community Grant

A unique funding opportunity for communities working to reduce human-bear conflict is available. Local governments, organizations and individuals were encouraged to develop projects that will reduce human-bear conflict and apply for funding. 

Human-bear conflicts have increased in recent years, resulting in property damage and increased demands on time and effort to respond to the conflicts by Colorado Parks and Wildlife and local government personnel. Expanding existing conflict reduction efforts or developing new approaches will help reduce the impact on bear populations and improve public safety. 

Read the Community Grant Program Guidelines​, which includes timeline, requirements, when funds need to be used by and more. 

Now accepting applications for the 2024 Grant Cycle:
Applications are due to the program coordinator by 5:00pm on May 24, 2024.

Who is eligible? 

Local governments, NGOs, HOAs, community groups, businesses, tribes, universities and individuals were all eligible to receive funding. Applicants could apply for grants between $50,000 and $500,000.

Projects should have local support, be designed to prevent conflict with bears, and have tangible outcomes with realistic timelines. Local support can be demonstrated through cost sharing, in kind contributions, letters of support, participation in public meetings, membership in local organizations and partnerships.

Highly desirable projects will model solutions to reduce conflict and are replicable by other communities, involve multiple partners, fill a need in an area with high conflict, and be innovative. 

2023 Grant Recipients

See the successful grant recipients announced in August 2023.

​Be Bear Awa​re

​​​​Today, bears share space with a rapidly growing human population. Black bears are curious, intelligent, and very resourceful; they will explore all possible food sources. If they find food near homes, camp​grounds, vehicles, or communities, they’ll come back for more. 

Bears will work hard to get the calories they need, and can easily damage property, vehicles, and homes. Bears that become aggressive in their pursuit of an easy meal must often be destroyed. 

Every time we’re forced to destroy a bear, it’s not just the bear that loses. We all lose a little piece of the wildness that makes Colorado so special. 

So please, learn to protect bears by being "Bear Aware", and share this information with your friends, neighbors, and community. We’re here to help!

Please do your part to keep bears wild.

​​​​​​​​​​Black Bears at a Glance

  • Black is a species, not a color. In Colorado, many black bears are blonde, cinnamon, or brown.
  • With their bulky fur coats, bears can look bigger than they are. Males average 275 lbs.; females average 175 lbs.
  • Over 90% of a bear’s natural diet is grasses, berries, fruits, nuts and plants. The rest is primarily insects and scavenged carcasses.
  • Black bears are very wary of people and other unfamiliar things. Their normal response to any per­ceived danger is to run away or climb a tree.
  • Most Colorado bears are active from mid-March through early November. When food sources dwindle they head for winter dens.
  • With a nose that’s 100 times more sensitive than ours, a bear can literally smell food five miles away.
  • Bears are very smart, and have great memories - once they find food, they come back for more.
  • During late summer and early fall bears need 20,000 calories a day to gain enough fat to survive the winter without eating or drinking.
  • Bears are not naturally nocturnal, but sometimes travel at night in hopes of avoiding humans.

Living with Bears Resources

Living with Bears: A Practical Guide to Bea​r Country
Colorado is fortunate to have Linda Masterson, author of Living with Bears: A Practical Guide to Bear Country as one of our Bear Aware team volunteers. Please visit site​ for more information about this book and how to live responsibly in bear country. 

Living with Bears Brochure (pdf)
Learn how to co-exist with bears safely.

Camping and Hiking in Bear Country
Tips from CPW for safe outdoor recreation in bear country, and what to do if you encounter a bear.

​​Keep Bears Wild Pledge (pdf)
You will need to copy the signed form, or print two copies, so you will have one to mail in after you have reviewed and completed the form.

Bear-Proofing ​

Bear-Proofing Your Home or Business
Learn how to keep bears out of your home and get rid of attractants, including taking down birdfeeders while bears are active​. 

Bears and Bird Feeders: What You Need to Know (pdf)
Contains easy checklist, hibernation information, how to attract birds not bears, when to remove feeders if bears are causing problems.

Building a Secure Beehive Enclosure (pdf)
Instructions and tips for building a bear-resistant beehive enclosure. 

Electric Fencing Guide 
Information from the Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks website 

For Parents and Kids

Bear Aware Volunteer Program

Bear Aware is a network of trained Colorado Parks and Wildlife volunteers throughout the state who help their neighbors and communities prevent problems for themselves and for bears. 

Bear Aware volunteers can answer questions, offer practical advice and even make house calls​​. They also do educational programs and staff informational booths at events. 

Statewide, there are over 220 volunteers dedicated to helping people coexist with bears. To find a Bear Aware volunteer in your area or join or to form a Bear Aware team, call your local CPW office. You can find volunteer opportunites off the CPW Connect website or contact a volunteer coordinator​ near you. 

Building a Better Bear Trap​

CPW's new "Belveal Bear Trap” is a unique design that allows wildlife officers to live trap bears, sedate them and then access them without having to crawl inside a cramped trap with the predator. The new design​ brings multiple benefits for staff and bears. Learn more about the benefits of the Belveal Bear Trap​.​