Grim Reaper used to get point across
7,000 posters displayed in basin
By Gregory Crofton
Tribune staff writer
It is a provocative image, but the BEAR League says it doesn’t know how else to get its message out.
The volunteers for the league were out Tuesday tacking up 7,000 posters around the Lake Tahoe Basin that depict the grim reaper feeding a bear cub. It states: “Don’t Feed Our Bears: Feeding our bears and cubs anytime, anywhere with any food will get them killed.”
“Do you think people will finally get it?” said Ann Bryant, executive director for the Homewood-based BEAR League. “We decided to use something that will get the point across loud and clear for people who don’t read or won’t read.”
Bryant says that since 2000, 77 bears have been killed on the California side of the Lake Tahoe Basin after they have been declared a threat to public safety or they were caught in the road and hit by a vehicle.
“We are inviting our bears into our neighborhoods with easy access to food and garbage and then killing them for taking us up on an offer no bear can refuse,” Bryant said. “People need to live and vacation in bear territory in a responsible manner, and that means keeping our food and garbage away from bears.”
Two nuisance bears have been euthanized on the Nevada side of the basin so far this year. Both animals had broken into homes, according Nevada Department of Wildlife Game Warden Carl Lackey.
Printing the color posters was paid for with grant money from Truckee Tahoe Community Foundation and Tahoe League for Charity.
The promotional campaign by the BEAR League, which has more than 900 members, will also include free bumper stickers and refrigerator magnets. The campaign is expected to cost about $45,000 but much of the cost is expected to be covered through donations, which include people volunteering their time and skills. Planning for the campaign began about nine months ago, Bryant said.
Lucinda Sayre, a member of the league since it was established six years ago in Tahoe City, came up with the image for the poster.
Sayre, a Squaw Valley resident, said, “It gets across the point without using words; that’s my job.”
The BEAR League can be reached at http://www.savebears.org or (530) 525-7297.