Columbia BasinAlliance for Literacy learning about wildlife Safety

As a WildSafeBC Community Coordinator the highlight of my job is the opportunity to teach people about wildlife biology and safety,  Thank you to the Columbia Basin Alliance for Literacy (CBAL) and the Columbia Basin Trust for a great morning working with newcomers to Fernie from Peru, Tanzania, The Philippines and Thailand.

To book a presentation for your group contact fernie@wildsafebc.com  cbal

 

 

Moose and calf sightings in Annex Park and Mt Fernie Provincial Park

Tuesday May 24.  It is calving season for moose and deer.  Moose and deer can be especially aggressive as they protect their young.  Moose and their calves have been reported by the duck pond in the Annex Park and by the campground in Mt Fernie Provincial Park.

Moose are wild animals and need to be given space and privacy. Stay safe by keeping an appropriate distance. Use caution when walking dogs, keep them under voice control and/or leash. Dogs chasing wildlife may result in human/wildlife conflict.

For more information on preventing human/wildlife conflict go to www.wildsafebc.com

Grizzly bear sightings on Mt Fernie Provincial Park Trails

Monday May 23rd.  Grizzly bear sightings have been reported on Lazy Lizard trail by the Project 9 intersection.  Moose sightings also reported in many areas and black bear sightings on Montane Trail the last few days.

Fernie is Wildlife Country

The Safest Wildlife Encounter is One Prevented

Avoid surprise encounters: Call out, clap your hands, sing or talk loudly

Look for signs of wildlife: Tracks, droppings, diggings, claw-marked trees, torn-up logs, overturned rocks and food caches.

Travel smart: Stay in groups, stay on marked trails and travel in daylight.

Do not litter: Pack it in, pack it out.

Carry bear spray: Keep it accessible and know how to use it as your last best defense.

Dog owners: keep your dogs under control. They may provoke defensive behavior in wildlife.

Cyclists: speed and quietness put you at risk for sudden encounters. Slow down and make noise.

Never Approach or Feed Wildlife

If you encounter a Bear:

  • STAY CALM
  • DO NOT RUN
  • Let the bear know you are human (arms out to side)
  • Use your voice in a calm, assertive manner.
  • Back away slowly and allow the bear an escape route
  • Never turn your back on wildlife
  • Do not approach or feed wildlife

If you encounter a Cougar:

  • STAY CALM, DO NOT RUN, MAINTAIN EYE CONTACT
  • Pick up small children and small pets
  • Let the Cougar know you are human-NOT prey
  • Make yourself as large and as mean as possible
  • Use your voice in a loud and assertive manner
  • Back away slowly. Never turn your back on wildlife
  • If the Cougar attacks, fight back with everything that you’ve got, it is a predatory attack

Never Approach or Feed Wildlife

Report human/wildlife conflict to 1-877-952-7277(RAPP) or #7277 on cell.

For more information on preventing human/wildlife conflict visit www.wildsafebc.com

 

 

 grizzly print

Bear sightings reported on Slalom Drive in Fernie

Wednesday May 18.  Bear sightings have been reported on Slalom Drive in Fernie the last few days.  Garbage left outdoors between collection days, under the carport, in the back yard or on the front porch is the root cause of human wildlife conflict and is against the law in most BC communities.

Please make every effort to be a good steward of our beautiful environment by keeping garbage indoors between collection days and inaccessible to bears.  Help your family and friends do the same.

Securing garbage, cleaning BBQ’s, managing fruit trees and other attractants is the single best way to keep people safe, prevent property damage and avoid the unnecessary killing of bears that come into conflict with people.

Thank you for helping keep wildlife wild and our community safe.bear family from fernie

Moose sightings reported in Fernie parks

Thursday May 12.  Moose sightings have been reported in James White Park and in West Fernie.  Bear sightings were also reported in Fernie earlier in the week on Mt Minton and Elkview Crescent but no sightings reported the last few days.

Moose Safety Tips

Moose are wild animals and need to be given space and privacy. Stay safe by keeping an appropriate distance. Moose are not normally aggressive but can be very dangerous if approached or startled, especially females with calves. Given the sheer size and strength of these animals, moose are capable of inflicting serious injuries.

  • Never approach a moose. Give the animals a wide berth and ensure they have an escape route.
  • If a moose does charge you, getting inside a nearby building or car is the safest option, but hiding behind a large tree or other solid object may effectively block the charge.
  • Moose will attack dogs as they view them in the same category as their natural predator, the wolf. Keep your dog leashed if moose are in the area.
  • Perhaps the biggest threat that moose pose to human safety is through vehicle collisions. Protect yourself by adjusting your speed in areas where moose are known to frequent especially between dusk and dawn.

For more information on wildlife safety visit www.wildsafebc.commoose by klyde

 

No reported bear sightings since March. Let’s keep it that way!

April 24th.  elkford brown bearsThere have been no reported bear sightings in Elk Valley and South Country communities since an incident involving a Fernie resident and a small black bear at 4 am on Pine avenue in March. Bears have started to emerge from their dens and will move great distances in search of newly greening plant growth, carcasses melting out of the snow and other potential food sources.

Bears are frequently drawn into residential neighborhoods by the promise of garbage and other attractants. Spring is the best opportunity we have to prevent bears from learning bad habits by ensuring that our properties are free of attractants (unsecured garbage, dirty BBQ’s and bird feeders).   If bears get the upper hand early by feeding in our back yards, it will be hard to make them wild again.

The seasonal WildSafeBC program has come out of hibernation and is planning a variety of educational programs and activities including: wildlife safety presentations, how to use bear spray, displays at community events and weekly media updates in local papers and radio. For up to date wildlife sightings and safety tips follow us on Facebook, WildSafeBC Elk Valley, visit www.wildsafebc.com or contact the community coordinator on fernie@wildsafebc.com to book a presentation for your group or if you have any concerns about keeping wildlife wild and communities safe.

Remember that keeping garbage stored indoors until collection day and securing wildlife attractants is the best way to keep people safe, prevent property damage, and avoid the unnecessary killing of bears that come into conflict with people.

 

Agressive black bear reported on Pine Avenue in Fernie

Thursday March 24.  There has been a report of an encounter with a small black bear displaying aggressive behaviour by the bridge on the way to the airport subdivision at 4 am on Wednesday March 23.  The Conservation Officer Service is currently investigating this report.

The safest wildlife encounter is one prevented. Your best defense is to be aware of wildlife in the area.

 Make Noise to avoid a surprise encounter (use your   human voice, clap hands or two rocks together – especially near running water or in dense brush)

  • Carry a walking stick (adults can carry Bear Spray in a side holster)
  • Walk in groups
  • Keep dogs leashed and/or under voice control

     If you encounter a Bear:

STAY CALM

  • DO NOT RUN
  • Let the bear know you are human (arms out to side)
  • Use your voice in a calm, assertive manner.
  • Back away slowly and allow the bear an escape route
  • Never turn your back on wildlife
  • Do not approach or feed wildlife

We live in wildlife habitat. Be aware of your surroundings and respectful of the environment. If you observed dangerous wildlife

  • accessing garbage or other human supplied food sources
  • that cannot be scared off
  • a bear, cougar or wolf seen in an urban area

Call the Conservation Officer Service Report All Poachers and Polluters (RAPP) 24 hr hotline on 1-877-952-7277. This allows officers to identify current hot spot locations and work with both residents and wildlife to encourage use of natural habitats and food sources before wildlife becomes habituated and/or a safety concern.

For more information on keeping communities’ safe and wildlife wild please visit www.wildsafebc.com, or follow us on Facebook WildSafeBC Elk Valley.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Black bear cub seen in West Fernie

Sunday March 13th.  A small black bear cub was seen on the North side of  McLeod Avenue in West Fernie on Friday evening.

An early spring has prompted hungry bears to emerge from their dens. It is much easier to keep food away from a wild bear in the first place than it is to teach a bear to stay away from unnatural food that he has learned to enjoy.  Spring is the best opportunity we have to prevent bears from learning bad habits by ensuring that our properties are free of attractants (unsecured garbage, dirty BBQ’s and bird feeders).   If bears get the upper hand early by feeding in our back yards, it will be hard to make them wild again.

Thank you for taking time to remove anything that may attract bears to your property.  Encourage your neighbours to do the same.

For more information go to www.wildsafebc.combear in tree smaller

 

 

 

 

Black bear seen by Maiden Lake in Fernie

dumpster prettySunday August 9.  A small black bear was seen on the Maiden Lake Trail behind Canadian Tire last night.  Be prepared and expect to encounter wildlife anytime and keep your garbage indoors between collection days.  There is still plenty of natural food for bears in the wilderness, lets not bait them into town with an easy food reward (garbage).

For more information on preventing human/wildlife conflict go to www.wildsafebc.com