Bears that frequent residential neighborhoods pose safety concerns.

4 bears trapped in small B.C. town and killed

“It’s not something that we want to do or look to do”

Four black bears trapped in the Town of Princeton in October were destroyed by conservation officers.

Euthanizing bears is a last but sometimes necessary resort, said Paul Pike, Conservation Officer from the Merritt detachment.

“It’s not something that we want to do or look to do,” he said. “It’s not very common and it’s certainly not the end result that we want to achieve. What we would really like is bears not having access to these non-natural food sources and they would move on.”

According to Pike the decision to set live traps for the bears was made based on numerous phone calls and complaints about bear activity in the community.

“There was some property damage done…and we got a complaint of a bear being aggressive to to a resident,” said Pike. “When a bear starts to access [food] and it starts to move around the community at all hours of the day and night, it starts to be a public safety concern.”

Pike said the full grown bears – three male and one female – were trapped in the Ponderosa Crescent area.

They were transported to a remote area and disposed of with a firearm.

Officers were unable to harvest any part of the animals or donate them.

“These bears have been getting access to human garbage. People throw all kinds of stuff into their garbage and they would not be safe for human consumption.”

Related: 2 charged for feeding B.C. bear Tim Hortons timbits

According to Pike, once a bear is used to sourcing human food, and begins to lose its fear of people, it cannot be properly relocated in the wilderness.

“I can give you a personal example that happened a few years ago. From a town close by here, I got a report of a bear causing property damage and I went and set a trap and caught a bear. The property owner said ‘that’s not the bear that’s causing the issue.’ So I ear-tagged that bear and, based on that information, I took that bear far away and let it go. Two years after I got a call from that same community that a bear’s causing property damage. I set a trap and I caught a bear…It was the same bear I removed from that town two years before.”

Related: Bear climbs inside B.C. family’s van with boy still inside

Pike said there was a sharp increase in reports of bears in town this year. Early in October “there were probably at least one or two a day…It’s dropped off dramatically in the last week for sure.”

To avoid this scenario in the future he said it is imperative that residents remove attractants from their properties.

That includes securing garbage and recycling indoors, not leaving freezers with food in them on back decks or in carports, keeping pet food indoors, cleaning barbecues and removing fruit from trees.

To report a typo, email:
publisher@similkameenspotlight.com
.



andrea.demeer@similkameenspotlight.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Agassiz-Rosedale Bridge construction could start in 2021, MLA says

The project is expected to cost substantially more than budgeted in 2017

EDITORIAL: Post-grad years are your time

Editor Grace Kennedy shares a few words for this year’s high school grads

Dinosaurs will reign at Sto:lo Children’s Festival

Jurassic Park theme takes over long-standing, free community event

COLUMN: Llamas, goats and snakes, oh my!

Making friends on the Ryder Lake Ramble not a walk in the park

PHOTOS: Sasquatch Days about ‘being proud of being Sts’ailes’

The joint event between Harrison and Sts’ailes returned to the village for its eighth year

VIDEO: Reading splashes into Agassiz’s Ferny Coombe Pool

The Agassiz Library held its annual Reading in the Pool event Friday, June 14

Otters devour 150 trout at Kootenay hatchery

The hatchery has lost close to 150 fish in the past several months

B.C. church’s Pride flag defaced for second time in 12 days

Delta’s Ladner United Church says it will continue to fly the flag for Pride month

Police probe report of shooting as Raptors rally continues

There were reports of a woman being injured at the event that celebrates the team’s NBA title win

Oil and gas sector cautious as deadline on Trans Mountain decision nears

Trudeau government expected to announce whether it will approve pipeline for second time on Tuesday

Skipping school costs a dozen B.C. students chance at a new car

Cowichan’s Jared Lammi showed up and won $5,000 cheque toward vehicle, but he can’t drive

BC Ferries adds extra and late night summer sailings

Seasonal adjustments to sailing times also in effect on many routes

People throwing food at a bear in Fernie alarms conservation groups

“Approaching and feeding bears contributes to habituation,” says conservation group

Feds announce $50M strategy to fight dementia

Emphasis is on prevention and and supporting caregivers

Most Read