Saint Mary Parish has been placed under a black bear advisory by the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries. According to the departments bear expert, the wild animals couldn't fatten up enough for denning, so they're awake and hungry. With nuts and berries scarce, bears are going through trash cans and pet food. Parish residents have been given 1300 bear-proof garbage cans. The department is urging residents to keep garbage containers and pet food inside at night. A public meeting about the bear problem is scheduled March 25th in Patterson.