Conservation officer Zane Testawich with a Kermode that was tranquilized and relocated earlier this summer. File photo

Busy bear summer for conservation officers

Calls to conservation about bears are decreasing but keep attractants managed and out of their reach

It’s not just in our heads, the Terrace Conservation office has had a very busy year with problem bear activity.

Conservation officer Scott Senkiw said less fruit and salmon available in their habitat is the main cause.

“Most bears have been identified as becoming habituated from household garbage and several cases have involved fruit bearing plants on residential properties,” said Senkiw.

“In some cases, Dangerous Wildlife Protection Orders have been served to properties with a substantial attractant issue. With that said, it was good to see that many residents heed our advice and keep all attractants to a minimum. This is especially important during peak times for bear activity typical of July, August and September.”

Less-than-prime wild fruit this season surely played a role in the increased amount of bear activity and subsequent calls received, he said.

In addition, a factor which compounded the issue was less-than-optimal salmon for bears to feed on.

In regards to the Kermode sightings, reports are on par with previous years, Senkiw said.

”However, it’s definitely a rare scenario to have one within city limits and exhibiting such elusive behaviour. The bear didn’t act aggressive at any point and tended to move to various parts of the city, primarily along the bench,” said Senkiw, adding that the healthy boar was eventually tranquilized and relocated.

“I have recently been made aware of another [Kermode] individual in the area which is also a healthy individual. It’s a privilege to observe these animals in their natural habitat outside of city limits.”

Problem wildlife calls pertaining to bears are slowly decreasing; however, residents of Terrace and all surrounding communities are asked to do their part with managing attractants. Bears are still active and trying to achieve the highest caloric intake that they can before settling down for the winter.

Any issues concerning problem wildlife activity or any violations can be reported to the conservation service by calling the Report All Poachers and Polluters hotline at 1-877-952-RAPP (7277).

 

A black bear feasts on a pile of apples with the lawn clippings dumped on the side of Krumm Road earlier this month.

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