UPDATED 5/8/2007 ..development-related story
Hungry bears attack dogs in mountain backyards
This is the first in a 3-part series on VIEWS.
I'll start by asking you a question. When you leave your abode, be it a youthful yurt or a lofty lodge, does what you see as you walk out the door matter to your clients (and you)?
Certainly, the ever-changing panorama beyond my door stirs me. To the East, just this morning, a poet's study in pure potential. (photo to your left) painted itself on the sky.
Twelve hours later, to the West, Ursus americanus blasted complacency to the rising moon when I stepped outside, camera in hand, abruptly to come within reach of this recalcitrant 200-pound bear at my front door.
Development just over the ridge to the North of our home crowded the bears out of their neighborhood and into our backyard. Clearcutting 30 acres (to expose a view), re-directed the bear path South and travelers along it, three cubs and Mama Bear, toward the ants in our woodpile. In case you didn't know it, bears love to munch on ants.
"Development is rapidly replacing bear habitat with human habitat in many forested areas. Newcomers often move here to be close to and enjoy nature, but it never occurred to them that a bear might visit their yard," reported the Asheville Citizen-Times.
REALTORS® BEWARE. While bears may be a matter for REALTORS ® in our neck of the woods to take up with relocating clients, these neighborhood sleuths are not the only challenge. In-the-know REALTORS® must be alert.
REALTORS® need to learn about factors that could contribute to the safety of clients, no matter where we practice. Here in Western North Carolina we must take into account the very real possibility of landslide. ( I wrote a bout this in an earlier article) According to the North Carolina Geological Survey's analysis of the risk of slides, reports an Op Ed in the Citizen Times "...on slopes of 40 percent or more, the risk rises... dramatically. ...
Construction of homes on steep slopes, whatever the elevation, needs to be regulated to protect the safety and the investment of those who buy the homes - and to protect those who live down-slope ...ensuring that homes built on slopes of 25 percent or greater, or in areas identified by the NCGS as prone to slides, be constructed safely.
EXAMPLE: A 50 ton boulder in a rockslide caused severe damage
to this 4-year old Broad River Fire Station
Buncombe County,(Asheville) North Carolina
For additional information about landslide hazards in North Carolina, please contact Mr. Richard Wooten with the Asheville Regional Office.
Other factors that contribute to the stability of a slope, the type of soil, the depth of bedrock, the presence or absence of a spring, and the amount and type of vegetation -real property investors need to consider. Here, a professional REALTOR® with an ECO designation can be the "resource for the resource."
Scenic views rank very high on the list of "Must Haves" in our area.
(See my photo at the beginning of this article) But building on a steep slope is not without consequences.
And, it is a "given" that real estate professionals be aware of consequences,
the intended and the unintended.
Talk to me about your local market. What, in your view, is important in your neighborhood?
A good place to start might be the US Geological Survey http://www.usgs.gov/
P.S. Black Bears Eat
- Horsetails & grasses
- Berries: chokecherry, huckleberry, & buffalo berry are favorites forbs (broad-leaned plants)
- Aquatic plants such as lilies
- Elk & Moose calves
- Deer fawns
- Ground squirrels & other small rodents
- Unsuspecting REALTORS® (just kidding!!!)
- Wasps, Ants
- Bees (adults & larvae)
Bear News 5/8/2007 The Asheville Citizen Times today reported
Hungry bears attack dogs in mountain backyards
ASHEVILLE, N.C. (AP) -- Bears in mountain communities have killed two family dogs in recent days, the result of cold weather depleting food supplies and development encroaching on wildlife, officials said. The killing or injuring of dogs happens each year when hungry bears head into developed areas looking for foodthen are provoked when dogs start barking at them, said Mike Carraway, a state Wildlife Resources Commission officer.
In Asheville on Sunday night, a mother black bear killed a dog that had been let out in the back yard. The bear, which had cubs nearby, was trying to get to a bird-feeder.In another incident Sunday night, a black bear killed a dog in a Madison County backyard.
"The dog is being aggressive, barking at the bear and the bear is basically just defending itself and its cubs," Carraway said. "It's common for this to happen in the spring when bears have small cubs."
Bear attacks are also becoming more common as development increases in bear habitats inmountainous areas, forcing bears to other areas. The population of bears is also increasing, Carraway said.
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