My coop would last about 2 minutes if a young one decided it wanted the chicken feed or chickensThanks, @ChickensComeHome2Roost, that's what I thought but the hole seemed so small for an animal that usually seems so big! But googling tells me that young bears can be under 100 pounds well after they're weaned.
I sent my father the pics I posted here & he shared them with the local highway department road agent, who drives the road to check things out on his way in to work in the mornings. He reports that he's seen 2 young bears near that house (~5am), probably the very culprit(s).
I just remounted my fence alert light on my own netting so that it faces the house, and makes consistent contact & therefore reliably stops flashing when the fence is on. If it flashes all the time it doesn't tell you anything useful! Now I should be able to look out from the kitchen after everything is shut up and know something is wrong if I see it flashing.
Also I tell myself, when my husband's dog digs holes under shrubs, next to stone walls, in the middle of the lawn, etc, that I really do think he discourages unwanted visitors. Especially during the day. Not completely, of course - the droppings, I believe fox, on the slope of the lawn overlooking the poultry fence & tractor show that they will seize their chance to check things out. But so far (knock wood) - and this goes back decades - we haven't had the bear problems that others in town have had. And that's in spite of the fact that we have practically a game superhighway just down the road from us, where our land provides an unbroken corridor from the mountainside across the road to the intervale and river beyond. But of course I will never take that for granted! Food and trash are always indoors, poultry fence & the horse fence in which the beehive enclosure sit are always hot. Fingers crossed that's enough.