Be a part of protecting our local black bears.

Boulder Bear Coalition is a 100% volunteer organization, which means that we can’t help the bears without help from caring individuals like you!

All ages welcome! Join our efforts and make a difference in the lives of bears!

Plus Volunteering is good for the body and mind!

Volunteer Opportunities
  • Fundraising. Help find relevant funding sources for BBC. e.g. grants, fundraising events and partnerships with local businesses.
  • Community Outreach. Help with education/awareness program to reduce human-bear conflict
  • Conflict Prevention. Work with community and local officials to implement proactive measures to keep people and bears safe. e.g.trash patrol and communicating with code enforcement, work as Community Fruit Rescue Coordinator, work on native food buffer project
  • Communications and Messaging. Help with content creation and research for BBC communication and messaging. e.g. website updates and Facebook posts, quarterly newsletter, partnership development

Current Projects

I.    Creating Bear Safe Neighborhoods

BBC is working towards creating Bear Safe Neighborhoods. Localized leadership, use of social networks, and positive peer pressure, can make a lasting impact on how we keep people and bears safe. We need help to:

  • Develop a Bear Safe Neighborhood Program
    • Identify Bear Safe Communities
    • Find leaders in these communities
    • Create and distribute educational materials
    • Integrate social networking: share wildlife information and alert neighbors to bears in area
    • Create and distribute signs/stickers to designate Bear Safe Homes
    • Share videos/photos of local wildlife to increase community awareness/safety
    • Hold bear education events in local parks

II.      Developing Native Food Buffer 

Boulder Bear Coalition partnered with the City of Boulder Open Space to plant hundreds of native food for bears and other wildlife in their natural environment. Planting natural berry bushes and fruit trees make a huge impact on keeping bears in the wild and the ecosystem healthy.
  • Work with Boulder Open Space and other experts on the development of plans for plants/location/irrigation
  • Help with planting and irrigation.

III.    Monitoring Trash and Code Enforcement 

Not very glamorous work, but oh-so-important! And count yourself a true bear hero!

Over the past few years, members of Boulder Bear Coalition have spent hundreds of hours walking the alleys of Boulder on evenings prior to and mornings of trash pick-up. We have documented and reported hundreds of bear-strewn trash each fall. And this very simple act has made a huge impact on protecting our local black bears. In response to this problem the city passed the Bear Protection Ordinance which requires the use of bear resistant trash carts throughout a large part of Boulder. 

Even after the Bear Protection Ordinance was in place, we continued to find that bears were getting into trash as many residents left their bear resistant carts either unlocked or overstuffed. As a result of our continued documentation, City Council mandated that Code Enforcement proactively monitor the alleyways and begin issuing summons immediately. The increase in enforcement had an immediate impact and as trash became less available, bears stopped relying on trash as a food source in those parts of town.

Code Enforcement is committed to proactive trash enforcement and what a difference this made in cleaning up the alleys and reducing the incidents of bears getting into trash. As history demonstrates, this is a team effort and the bulk of the responsibility falls on Code Enforcement and the community. We have to be the ears and eyes to help ensure that our neighbors are securing their trash and that Code Enforcement is adequately enforcing the law.

We need volunteers to monitor and report trash violations (as well as broken cans) between the middle of July and end of October. Our plan is to have this as part of the Bear Safe Neighborhoods. If you would like to help ensure that bears are not getting into trash, this is a very important part of keeping them safe.

How to report a trash violation:

  • Take a photo of the trash with the address showing (if possible)
  • Report the issue to Code Enforcement (3 different ways to do that)
    1. Using Inquire App on your phone, the report is reported immediately to code enforcement
    2. Using Inquire App on your home computer, report addresses when you return home
    3. Call Code Enforcement at 303-441-3333 (you can do this anonymously if you wish)

Other Ways to Help Support Our Efforts

  1. Like us on FaceBook
  2. Receive quarterly email newsletters.
    • In the form above or on the contact page, in the comment box, let us know that you would like to receive the newsletter
  3.  Donate (thank you!)

To continue making an impact, we need to show the city of Boulder that our community cares about our local bears.

If you would like to help with any of our projects or have ideas on ways to protect the bears, please contact us!

Thank you!
We look forward to working with you!