Dealing with Dangerous Wildlife – It is always a good time to review safety tips with your children if they should encounter wildlife in the area:
- • Stop, don’t run. Pick up small children so they will not run. Stay calm and avoid direct eye contact.
- • Never approach the animal but do not take your eyes off the animal or turn your back.
- • If you cannot safely move away, try to appear larger than the animal. Do not crouch down or try to hide.
- • If the animal displays aggressive behavior, shout, clap your hands, wave your arms or throw rocks.
- • If the animal attacks, fight back and try to stay on your feet, do NOT play dead, do NOT run and climb a tree.
- • If a bear attack continues, as a last resort, protect yourself by curling into a ball or lying on your stomach and playing dead.
Please tell your child to be alert for any wildlife while waiting for the bus or walking home from bus stops or out in the backyard playing. It is always best to have children walk in pairs or as a group, regardless of wildlife. It is also important to discourage students from walking or cutting through wooded areas to get to school or home for overall safety, not just due to the wildlife issue. Please review these safety tips with your children. The Department of Fish and Wildlife has developed information specific to dangerous wildlife and what to do, and not do, if you encounter wildlife. Report wildlife encounters to the Department of Fish and Wildlife during regular business hours call 425.775.1311 or after hours call 911.