CC BY 2.0 Beverly & Pack
Since the government shutdown got underway last week, the resulting furlough of federal employees and the closure of public land hasn’t been good news for anyone.
Well, except maybe for bears.
In Fairbanks, Alaska, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) is responsible for routine maintenance on the grounds of White Mountains National Recreation Area. Due to recent furloughs however, those duties are now delegated to just two rangers remaining on staff. Not surprisingly, making sure all the trash bins along the park’s 1,000,000 acres are emptied on time has proven impossible for the pair.
Despite the shutdown, the sprawling recreation area has remained open for hikers, hunters, and other day-trippers. And while most of those visitors have been careful to safely dispose of their waste, it’s adding up to be a problem.
According to the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner, BLM ranger Jonathan Priday and his one remaining partner can’t keep up with all the trash. Now, opportunistic grizzly bears are clearly enjoying the fact that those formerly impossible-to-paw-open trash cans have been bested by squabbling in Washington D.C.: