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Bears and Apples!
Carelessly stored garbage and apple trees are the root causes of bear human conflict in Fernie. What is the problem with bears eating apples? Apples are a fine food source for bears. They are very similar to many natural foods that bears normally eat. The problem is that most apple trees are located in people’s yards. Bears are natural scavengers, have great memories, a keen sense of smell and will remember an easy food source. Carelessly stored garbage, birdfeeders, dirty barbecues and fruit trees are open invitations to bears.
Elk Valley apples are ripe and bears are passing through town in search of easy food sources. Owning a fruit tree in bear country is a big responsibility. Pick fruit daily as it ripens or pick it before it ripens if you don’t intend on using it and don’t allow fruit to accumulate on the ground. Pruning your fruit trees will result in a better and more manageable quality of fruit. Consult your local arborist. Dispose of excess apples responsibly, take them to the compost bin at the transfer station, it is free!
Recent wildlife sightings
• A bear and cub reported in the James White Park.
• Bear sightings reported at the Fernie Mobile Home Park, Fairy Creek trails behind the Chamber of Commerce, in the new proposed development area, Coal Creek Heritage and Uprooted trails.
• Daily cougar sightings by the campground and bear sightings reported in town.
A limited number of bear resistant containers are available to Elkford residents who don’t have a garage or shed or other suitable means to secure garbage between collection days. The containers are reinforced with metal and latches and have been proved to be bear resistant and are compatible with the automated garbage collection system. Contact the District for more information and to find out if you qualify.
Bear season is here. Be prepared and expect to encounter wildlife any time, any place!
Bear safety tips
* Be aware of the 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
If you encounter a black 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
Report sightings to 1-877-952-7277 or #7277 on cell
For more information on wildlife safety go to http://www.wildsafebc.com