This black bear was spotted in a tree in downtown Fernie in late-September.

Wildlife Corner Update

This Wildlife Corner Update is brought to you by WildSafeBC.

Submitted by Kathy MurrayWildSafeBC Community Coordinator

A grizzly bear and two cubs were reported initially getting into chicken coops on rural properties.  They have now made their way into Fernie, reported in the field behind Home Hardware and at the north end of Hand Avenue and Colclough in West Fernie and Aspen Crescent. Black bear sightings, bears accessing garbage, bears climbing onto porches looking into windows, bears swatting dogs, bears bluff charging people at night reported throughout the Elk Valley and South Country.

Are you comfortable with bears, even a grizzly and cubs in your backyard?  If you have garbage in the backyard, under the carport, on the deck, apple trees that haven’t been picked, pet food outside, chicken coops or anything , expect bears, even grizzly bears to turn up looking for easy food.  Bears getting garbage in your yard will often drag it to another property.  Your negligence is jeopardizing other people’s safety.  Remove the attractants, bears will move on.  If it is safe to do so, scare the bears off your property, a car alarm works well, air horn, bang pots and pans even a loud electric guitar has proven to deter bears.

Carelessly stored garbage and apple trees are the root causes of bear human conflict in the Elk Valley and South Country.  What is the problem with bear’s 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 BBQ’s and fruit trees are open invitations to bears.

Apples are ripe and bears are passing through town in search for 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.  If you can’t manage your apple tree, consider cutting it down and replacing it with a non-fruit bearing tree.  Consult your local arborist.  Dispose of excess apples responsibly, take them to the transfer station, it is free!

Fernie

Black bear sightings, bears accessing garbage, bears climbing onto porches looking into windows, bears swatting dogs, bears bluff charging people at night reported throughout Fernie  on 5th street, all along 4th avenue ,by the Courthouse and city Hall, 8th, 9th and  11th avenue in the Annex,

Sparwood

Bear accessing garbage and causing property damage in Sparwood Heights, Mountainview and Spardell Mobile Home Parks.

Elkford

Bears reported accessing garbage along Minto Crescent, Alpine Way, Balmer Crescent, Cassidy Crescent.

Be prepared and expect to encounter bears anytime, anyplace.

At home: Bear proof your property: lock up the garbage, clean up the fruit, feed pets indoors, keep pets indoors at night and get rid of anything that might attract bears to your property. Encourage and help your neighbours do the same.

In town or on the trails: If you encounter a bear, remain calm, identify yourself as human with a calm voice, back away slowly and leave the bear an escape route.

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

Contact Bylaw Services and 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.

 

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Fernie SAR responds to two calls this weekend

The calls reported an injured mountain biker and an abandoned kayak

The Fernie Academy hosts virtual art show

The school’s annual Mother’s Day Art Show went online through The Arts Station

Funding available for Elk Valley charities coping with COVID-19

Almost $110,000 is set aside to be distributed by the Community Foundation of the Kootenay Rockies

Elk Valley businesses reopen after months of closures

Opening with restrictions, local services keep health and safety a priority

Mental health and COVID-19: going forward

Dr. Tyla Charbonneau offers some mental health advice for moving into our new normal

VIDEO: Injured bald eagle rescued in B.C. First Nations community

Bird suspected injured in fight, whisked off to Coquitlam rehab

Toronto Raptors’ Ujiri says conversations about racism can no longer be avoided

Thousands have protested Floyd’s death and repeated police killings of black men across the United States

B.C.’s Central Kootenay region declares state of emergency, issues evacuation orders

The evacuation alert covers all areas except the Cities of Castelgar and Nelson

‘I’m afraid’: Witnesses of wolf attack on senior near Prince Rupert worried about safety

Frank Russ shows where the unprovoked wolf attacked his father

Protesters prepare to rally against racism in front of Vancouver Art Gallery

Rally is in response to the deaths of black Americans and a Toronto woman

Introducing the West Coast Traveller: A voyage of the mind

Top armchair travel content for Alaska, Yukon, BC, Alberta, Washington, Oregon and California!

Protesters rally against anti-black, Indigenous racism in Toronto

Police estimated the crowd to be between 3,500 and 4,000 and said there was no violence

Feds earmark $1.5M to support recovery of B.C., Indigenous tourism

B.C. money will be split between Vancouver Island and Indigenous tourism

‘We’re sick of it’: Anger over police killings shatters U.S.

Tens of thousands marched to protest the death of George Floyd

Most Read