ARIZONA NEWS

Arizona Game and Fish warn about pumpkins attracting wildlife

Oct 27, 2021, 4:15 AM
(Photo by: Andrew Woodley/Universal Images Group via Getty Images)...
(Photo by: Andrew Woodley/Universal Images Group via Getty Images)
(Photo by: Andrew Woodley/Universal Images Group via Getty Images)

PHOENIX — Your spooky pumpkin designs might not scare away wildlife, the Arizona Game and Fish Department warns.

Halloween pumpkins and fall decorations left outside, such as gourds and squash, could attract Arizona wildlife to homes and businesses.

Javelinas, coyotes, deer and bears are among the animals that eat some of the vegetables associated with the holiday displays.

“Habituating wildlife to a human food source inevitably leads to conflicts with people and can result in serious harm in some cases,” Locana de Souza, urban wildlife specialist with AZGFD, said in a press release.

“Furthermore, unintentional or intentional feeding can cause problems for wildlife, such as obesity and malnutrition, and promote the spread of disease.”

AZGFD says outdoor displays should be placed 4-6 feet off the ground and taken inside after dark.

It’s against state law to feed wildlife in Maricopa, Pinal and Pima counties with some exceptions. Violators can face a maximum fine of $300.

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Arizona Game and Fish warn about pumpkins attracting wildlife