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

Bear follows runner on trail in Fernie Update

Friday August 7, 3 pm.  Update.  The juvenile black bear followed the runner on R Trail all the way to Ridgemont road.  The bear was last seen running towards the Kush trail when the runner stopped a truck and jumped in.  In an effort to distract the bear the runner dropped a blue and silver day pack on the side of R trail, close to the wooden bridges.  If you find the day pack please turn it into the RCMP.  Thank you.  There have been no other reported sighing’s of the bear.

Black bear follows a runner down Oh Dear and Old Stumpy trails in Fernie

Friday August 7.  A juvenile black bear was reported following a runner for over 20 minutes down Deadfall, to Oh Dear and Old Stumpy trails.  There have been other recent reports of this bear in the same area but the bear would always run away when seeing people.  In this case the person ran when they saw the bear, which invoked the bears chase instinct.  The bear was last seen heading towards the golf course from the bottom of Old Stumpy.

The safest bear encounter is one prevented.

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

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Black bear and cubs seen on Hedonism Trail in Mt Fernie Provincial Park

Tuesday August 4.  A black bear and her cubs were seen on Hedonism Trail by a mountain biker.

Make noise to warn wildlife of your presence and avoid surprising them at close range which may provoke defensive behaviour. All our trails are multi use and are becoming noticeably busier with hikers, bikers,dogs and wildlife. Making noise, especially when approaching blind corners and areas where the line of sight is poor will result in a reduction in human/wildlife and trail user conflict. Remember, wildlife and uphill traffic have the right of way.

For more information on wildlife safety go to www.wildsafebc.com