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Bears, bears everywhere -- and no easy solutions, say some residents

A black bear went from house to house looking for garbage cans to rummage through along Foothill Drive and nearby streets in East Anchorage on Monday evening, July 16, 2012. Bill Roth

Residents of the East Anchorage neighborhood where a mother bear and three cubs were shot by authorities this week told KTUU they're not entirely to blame for the incident, despite what a Fish and Game biologist says. They want a meeting with Fish and Game to discuss alternatives.

Fish and Game wildlife biologist Jessy Coltrane says ... that if residents don't have bear-resistant trash containers, they must take other precautions. She suggests keeping trash cans inside your garage right until the morning of pickup. She also suggested that, if you don't have a garage, you might need to build a bear-proof cabinet in which to store the can until trash pickup day.

But some residents felt the solutions were impractical. Tonight (Saturday) more than a few complained that they were renters, and did not have the power to purchase bear-proof cans on their own or the money to build bear-resistant cabinets.

Then there was the problem of the trash collections themselves. Solid Waste Services, one of two companies that pick up garbage in that neighborhood, points out that its containers are not bear-resistant. The reason is, their trucks are automated. They are not designed to deal with bear-resistant containers.

Read more, and watch the news video, at KTUU; then go to KTVA for its report on the invasion of an East Anchorage home by a smallish black bear. It spent an hour in the homeowner's upstairs bedroom and was captured on video finally departing the house -- in a hurry.

And in Juneau, a bear got stuck in a homeowner's mudroom. See the video on YouTube.