AttaBoy! On the Menu for Alaskan Bears
Arnold W. Hanger, 66, of Juneau Alaska was cited June 20th for 3 misdemeanor counts of feeding game and one count of reckless endangerment. Alaska Wildlife Troopers investigated Hanger's home after a tip that Hanger was feeding the wildlife. Trooper Sgt. Matthew Dobson drove to the house to investigate, and on the way up to the house bears were walking up the driveway. They paid no attention to Dobson. Dobson and another trooper saw a total of six bears on Hanger's property. The bears were eating and chewing - there are chew marks on Hanger's porch and siding torn on exterior walls of the house. At first Hanger denied feeding the bears, so the troopers left and got a search warrant and came back.
There were dozens of empty bags of AttaBoy! dog food, and then Hanger admitted to feeding the bears. He lives alone, and likes to have the bears around, but did admit to them becoming a problem. He doesn't remember how long he has been doing it, dozens of years though. One bear that he named Ms. White he has had around for the past 6 years, she came back this year with three cubs in tow.
Hanger has been spreading a 50 lb bag of dog food a day for the bears around his property, that backs up to Tongass National Forest. Neighbors especially those with small children do not like having all the bears in such close proximity. Hanger was cooperative and asked what he could do to help. State wildlife biologists have tagged and collared the bears that were on Hanger's property to keep track of them, they are afraid that most of them will have to be killed but that is not something they want to do. Feeding bears takes away their healthy fear of humans and human areas, which could make them dangerous. From Anchorage Daily News.