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‘Dinner for one’ has Trail RCMP reminding people to secure attractants

A fed bear is a dead bear
Juvenile bear eating garbage in a Trail backyard. Photo: Trail RCMP

An uptick in calls about hungry bears being lured into neighbourhoods by garbage has Trail police reminding homeowners and tenants to mind their smelly attractants.

For example, Friday morning (May 3), the detachment received a complaint about a bear in the yard of a residence in the 2000 block of 7th Avenue, in Trail.

An officer attended and located a juvenile brown-coloured bear eating household refuse from garbage cans in the backyard.

The officer scared off the bruin by throwing a few small rocks in its general area.

He spoke to the occupant who cleaned up and secured the garbage to prevent future wildlife conflicts.

“The bears are hungry and looking for food after a long winter nap,” advises Sgt. Mike Wicentowich.

“Please don’t be the un-bear-able neighbour who keeps garbage and other attractants in their yard.”

He furthers that removing potential food sources is really a “bear necessity” for Kootenay life.

Human-wildlife can be reported to the BC Conservation Officer Service at 1.877.952.RAPP (7277).

For information on how to be Bear Smart, visit the B.C. government website:

Bear Smart

Every year hundreds, and in some years over a thousand, bears are destroyed as a result of conflicts between people and bears.

In rare instances, people are also injured or even killed as a result of these conflicts. Most of these problems begin when people allow bears to access non-natural food sources such as garbage.

The Bear Smart Community program has been designed by the Ministry of Environment and Climate Change Strategy in partnership with the British Columbia Conservation Foundation and the Union of British Columbia Municipalities.

It is a voluntary, preventative conservation measure that encourages communities, businesses and individuals to work together.

The goal is to address the root causes of human-bear conflicts, thereby reducing the risks to human safety and private property, as well as the number of bears that have to be destroyed each year.

This program is based on a series of criteria that communities must achieve in order to be recognized as being “Bear Smart.”

The responsibility to manage human-bear conflicts rests with everyone; Bear Smart requires participation from the provincial government, municipal governments, and local citizens to be successful.

Sheri Regnier

About the Author: Sheri Regnier

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