Got Grizzlies? Defenders of Wildlife Helps Build Bear Barriers in Your Backyard


Contact: Leigh Anne Tiffany; (202) 772-0259;

Got Grizzlies? Defenders of Wildlife Helps Build Bear Barriers in Your Backyard

MISSOULA, Mont. (June 6, 2017) –  Defenders of Wildlife’s 7th annual Electric Fence Incentive Program is underway. People in specified counties in Montana, Idaho, Wyoming and eastern Washington can apply for funding and technical assistance to build bear-resistant electric fencing that safely protects property from grizzly bears.

Russell Talmo, Rockies and Plains Program Associate with Defenders of Wildlife, issued this statement:

“Some of the most significant obstacles to grizzly bear recovery continue to be bear-human conflicts and human-caused mortality. There are a variety of simple and affordable measures that people can take to reduce these conflicts. Our Electric Fence Incentive Program is a shining example of how grizzly bears and humans can coexist.”


A primary factor limiting grizzly bear recovery is human-caused mortality. Bears follow their nose to find enough calories that will generate the fat reserves necessary to make it through the winter. When bears find foods like garbage, fruit trees and livestock, they are often removed by management agencies or killed by landowners. By preventing such conflicts, we are benefiting both people and bears. Properly installed bear-resistant electric fencing is a simple and effective way to do just that.

Defenders of Wildlife reimburses 50 percent of the cost of an electric fence (up to $500) for securing grizzly bear attractants, such as chickens, garbage, bees, gardens, fruit trees and other livestock in eligible counties in Washington, Idaho, Montana and Wyoming. Through this program, Defenders has helped more than 260 landowners to complete electric fence projects since 2010.

This spring, Defenders ran a print advertising campaign with placement in the following newspapers in Montana and Idaho: Daily Inter Lake, Western County News, Valley Journal, Bonners Ferry Herald, Carbon County News, Gardiner Chamber of Commerce Newsletter, Tobacco Valley News and Sanders County Ledger.

Check out our application and website to find out more. Funding is limited, so please contact us as soon as possible if you are interested in this program.


Defenders of Wildlife is dedicated to the protection of all native animals and plants in their natural communities. With nearly 1.2 million members and activists, Defenders of Wildlife is a leading advocate for innovative solutions to safeguard our wildlife heritage for generations to come. For more information, visit and follow us on Twitter @DefendersNews.

You may also be interested in:

On the Blog
With spring approaching, grizzly bears are stirring in their dens, marking the beginning of a new season of projects for our field team, which works hard to keep people, property and grizzlies safe.
Defenders in Action
Bears die when they get into trouble with people’s garbage, livestock, when they are hit by cars and trains or illegally killed. By preventing these conflicts we can keep bears alive and on the road to recovery.
Bison with calf, © Diana LeVasseur
Success Story
November 2014 - More than 100 wild bison were brought to Fort Peck Indian Reservation, adding to this historic conservation herd.
Success Stories
June, 2013 - The Montana Supreme Court lifts the injunction that prevented Yellowstone bison from being relocated to tribal lands.