Eastern Wildlife Damage Control Conferences


Date of this Version

September 1989


The New York State black bear (Ursus americanus) population/ approximately 4,000 animals (Clarke 1977)/ causes damage to apiaries in the Catskill/ Adirondack/ and Southern Tier regions of the state. During 1987/ 1988/ and 1989, USDA Animal Damage Control (ADC) administered a program in New York to control bear damage to apiaries. Control activities were carried out pursuant to a Cooperative Agreement between ADC and the New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets/ and were supported by matching Federal- State contributions. Program objectives were beekeeper education aimed at preventing bear damage and for the construction of demonstration temporary electric fences.

During 1987/ an 8-wire/ low-tension fence of 12.5 gauge wire used in conjunction with a high-voltage/ low-impedence New Zealand energizer was constructed around an apiary in Clinton County. In 1988/ two fences were built in Steuben County: an 8-wire/ low-tension fence of 14 gauge stainless steel braided cable used with a 110 volt energizer connected to a nearby utility pole/ and a 3-strand polytape fence used with a solar-charged 6-volt energizer. In early 1989/ a 42-inch high polywire mesh fence/ used with a solar 6-volt energizer/ was installed at another Steuben County site. The polytape fence is considered the most desirable because of effectiveness/ relative low cost/ portability/ ease of installation/ and compatibility with the polar 6-volt energizer.