HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH) — Bears will forage for 20 hours a day this fall as they begin readying themselves for hibernation, the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection warned Friday.

That warning came alongside a reminder of preventative efforts that can be made to decrease the likelihood of a bear becoming familiar with humans.

The state’s more than 1,000 bears will each need to consume at least 20,000 calories a day. But while a pound of acorns contains 2,100 calories and a pound of blueberries only 256, DEEP said that a single birdfeeder of black oil sunflower, or a garbage container filled with leftovers, can fulfill that calorie need.

And because the acorn crop this year had what is considered widespread “failure,” the bears will be desperate for other food sources.

The more a bear eats food near humans, the more it will associate humans with food, and potentially become a threat.

This year, DEEP said it has tracked 69 incidents where bears broke into homes — surpassing the previous record of 45 in 2020.

The agency suggests removing food attachments from bird feeders, cleaning grills and securing garbage. If you encounter a bear while in the yard or hiking, wave and make loud noises, and then go into a structure.

DEEP has additional tips on avoiding bear interactions on its website.