Wildlife Awareness and Safe use of Bear Spray Workshop in Elkford Tonight, September 17th at 6 pm, outdoors by the Elkford Public Library

WildSafeBC is celebrating their 5th Annual BC Goes Wild September 2020.   Come along and learn how to respond to wildlife encounters and get hands on experience using inert bear spray (like the real thing but without the sting of the pepper).  The safest wildlife encounter is one prevented.

Having bear spray accessible and knowing how to use it will give you the confidence to do the right thing.   Stay calm, assess the situation, respond accordingly and not give in to the instinct to run, which can trigger the chase instinct.  Bear spray has been determined to be an effective deterrent that can reduce injury and potentially safe your life. Like a seat belt, it should be considered essential safety equipment when travelling in wildlife country.

Free of charge.  For more information and to register contact the WildSafeBC Coordinator, fernie@wildsafebc.com

Thank you Fernie residents for not putting garbage out the night before collection.

During a garbage patrol of Area 2 last night only 11 residences had garbage out the night before collection.  (Annex x2, Alpine trail x4, Canyon Trail x3, West Fernie x 2 and Mountview 0).  Well done Mountview residents.  Garbage out had night has been identified with a yellow sticker (see photo)

Garbage set on the curb at night is an easy target for a hungry bear and for other wildlife.  By removing access to garbage we can help prevent food-conditioning wildlife. Food conditioning is a learned behavior where bears begin to associate people and their property with a food reward. This can lead to safety concerns. With the absence of the food reward, they are less likely to return which helps keep wildlife wild and improve community safety for our neighbours, friends and family.  

Close call between a dog and a bear and cub in James White Park on the weekend

A leashed dog broke out of its collar to chase a cub on a trail in James White Park.  This provoked defensive behaviour from the sow defending her cub.  It was a close call. The dog suffered minor injuries. 

Thank you for preventing human/wildlife encounters in our parks, trails and at home.  Keep dogs under close control, keep garbage indoors until day of collection, clean up apple trees and secure any other bear attractant.  The end result will be a cleaner and safer community for everyone. 

Bear and cub reported in James White Park yesterday

Sept 6. There were reports of people encountering a bear and cub in James White Park yesterday afternoon. Be prepared and expect to encounter bears in town and on the trails. Work with your neighbors to ensure that your neighborhood remains safe for your family and our wildlife. Remove anything that might attract bears (garbage, apples, dirty bbq. etc..)

For more information on bear safety go to https://wildsafebc.com/species/black-bear/

Heikos and Three sisters trails are closed until further notice

More people hiking, biking and camping in grizzly bear habitat will increase the potential for human wildlife conflict.  Recreation Sites and Trails BC have closed Heikos and The Three Sisters Trails until further notice in order to help prevent human/grizzly bear conflict.  Regardless of where you choose to go to recreate you are in grizzly bear country. 

On the trails:  Be prepared andexpect to encounter wildlife anytime.  Make noise to warn wildlife of your presence, watch for signs of wildlife, fresh tracks and scat, carry bear spray and know how to use it. If you encounter wildlife, back away slowly and leave.  Never approach or feed wildlife.  Report encounters to 1-877-952-7277.

At home:  Keep all garbage stored securely indoors until you dispose of it responsibly.   Avoid using bird feeders during bear season and manage your fruit trees, compost and other attractants responsibly. 

Visit https://wildsafebc.com/ for more information