Grizzly bears making themselves at home in Elk Valley towns.

Wildlfie update Monday September 26

sparwood grizzlies

Fernie

Bears reported on Elkview Drive, 9th avenue in the Annex, at the East end of 1st avenue by the schools, in the park behind West Fernie and on Stove Trail in Mt Fernie Provincial Park.

Sparwood

Bear and cubs reported in the campground and by the CP rail bunkhouse.

Elkford

Grizzly bear sightings reported on Needles Crescent by the bus stop, Bear Cub park on Galbraith drive and a walker on Cougar trail reported a grizzly bear walking towards him as he backed away.  Residents have been reported taking photos of grizzly bears sat on their front lawns.

Grasmere

A relocated collared grizzly bear from Montana was reported accessing apple trees and livestock feed.

Bears have been accessing garbage left outdoors, walkers on trails close to towns are getting stalked by grizzly bears, people have trees loaded with apples, won’t pick the apples but want the bear in the yard dealt with!  We chose to live here so we are all responsible for making sure we are making every effort to mitigate human/wildlife conflict.  We have a revolving door of new people and new bears in town all the time. So we long timers who have a better tolerance and understanding of wildlife need to lead by example and take it upon ourselves to work with new neighbours and visitors and make them “Bear Aware” and tell them about the resources we have.   If you are new to bear country, it’s up to you to learn about living with wildlife.

We have a volunteer group that will pick apples for people that are unable, contact Rachel Dortman, tel:  250-423-8665.  Wildsight has an apple capture program with equipment available to lend, fruit picking, tree pruning, apple presses, dehydrators, sauce makers etc…  Contact 250-423-3322.

Districts are taking measures to enable residents to dispose of garbage responsibly and many businesses are upgrading to bear resistant dumpsters. The WildSafeBC Junior Ranger program will be presented to over 1500 students in the Elk Valley and South Country. The Junior Rangers will be asked to help the family bear-proof their home and teachers have been asked to follow up.

We have made a lot of progress the last few years and thank you to everyone who has made an effort to bear proof their property.  We all have to work together.  Sadly between WildSafeBC, The Conservation Officer Service, local bylaw officers, volunteers and community groups we don’t have the resources to address all potential human/wildlife conflict situations.

Thank you for helping spread the word that garbage, fruit trees, birdseed and pet food etc. attract bears to your property making it more likely for the bear to break into your home creating a safety risk for your family and a death sentence for the bear.

 

 

 

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