Court asked to review limits on B.C. conservation officers’ power to kill wildlife

The case stems from when a bear cub was put down in 2016

An animal advocacy group is asking the country’s top court to review a previous ruling that found B.C. conservation officers have the “unlimited authority” to kill wildlife.

The group, known as the Fur-Bearers, filed their application for leave to appeal in the Supreme Court of Canada on Monday, following the B.C. Supreme Court’s dismissal of a similar lawsuit late last year.

According to the B.C.-based group, a conservation officer euthanized a black bear cub near Dawson Creek in 2016, even though staff at a wildlife centre in Smithers had agreed to take it in.

The group argues the cub was “vulnerable [and] orphaned” and posed no danger to anyone.

Last year, the B.C. Supreme Court judge said it was “inconceivable” that lawmakers meant to prevent conservation officers’ powers to killing animals that are “at large and are likely to harm.”

The group said it was worried officers would kill animals in circumstances most people would find “inappropriate, and even immoral.”

Executive director Lesley Fox questioned why the officers do not have an external or third-party review. The 2016 case was reviewed twice internally, the group said, with both reviews supporting the decision to kill the bear cub.

“We believe that conservation officers, who are law enforcement agents and not wildlife experts or rehabilitators, should not be the only ones determining whether an animal should be sent to rehabilitation for care and release, or killed,” said Fox.

“Canadians see animals as sentient beings that must be treated with compassion and in accordance with shared values.”


@katslepian

katya.slepian@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Ghostriders welcomed home

Fernie Ghostriders win 5-3 in front of a sold out crowd during home opener

Elkford considers public smoking ban ahead of cannabis legalization

Elkford residents can learn more about the proposed cannabis regulations at an open house today

Crews successfully battle overnight house fire in Tie Lake

No injuries, home damage minimal thanks to quick response by crews

More burning prohibitions rescinded in southeast B.C.

Category 2 and 3 fires will be permitted in Southeast Fire Centre as of 1p.m. on Wednesday.

UPDATED: Pratt to be acclaimed as Cranbrook mayor

Mayor will serve another term after running unopposed in the upcoming municipal election

Watch out for Pavement Patty: Drivers warned outside B.C. elementary school

New survey reveals unsafe school zones during 2018 back-to-school week

Youth give back to community

On August 30, Eliora and William Vandersteen, Matthew White, Isla Vandersteen, Alexis… Continue reading

Horvat leads Canucks to 4-3 shootout victory over Kings

Vancouver dumps L.A. in NHL pre-season contest

Update: Search called off for missing plane between Edmonton and Chilliwack

Search efforts were concentrated along the Highway 5 corridor between Valemount and Kamloops

Why Whistler for ski jumping in 2026? Calgary proposal gets pushback

Calgary 2026 proposes re-using the 2010 ski jumping venue Whistler for that sport and nordic

VIDEO: Hundreds line highway as family brings home body of B.C. teen

Northern B.C. showed their support by lining Hwy 16 as Jessica Patrick’s body returned to Smithers.

Despite progress, threat of 232 tariffs dominates NAFTA negotiations

Any deal is seen to require congressional approval before Dec. 1 to survive new Mexican government

B.C. MP Todd Doherty receives award for saving man who collapsed on a plane

Conservative MP was flying from Vancouver to Prince George, B.C., in June last year

Alleged border jumper from Oregon facing 2 charges after police chase in B.C.

Colin Patrick Wilson charged with dangerous operation of motor vehicle, flight from a peace officer

Most Read