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  • Writer's pictureRiley Gettens

Bears are definitely awake.

2024 02 26


We have seen a single black bear making his rounds lately. Some excellent videos are also on the West Bench Facebook page (thank you for sharing). Below is information about bear safety and an information release from last year.


  • The Report All Poachers and Polluters (RAPP) hotline should be used to report wildlife-human interactions where public safety may be at risk: 1-877-952-7277

  • Please contact Shelley Fiorito, RDOS Projects Coordinator, at 250-490-4110 or email rdos@wildsafebc.com for further information.


 


 

REGIONAL DISTRICT OF OKANAGAN-SIMILKAMEEN | INFORMATION RELEASE

 July 21, 2023

 

Reducing conflict with bears

 

The Regional District of Okanagan-Similkameen (RDOS) is reminding residents, property owners, and visitors to be aware of bears in the region. If there is a potential wildlife conflict in your community, please contact the RAPP line at 1-877-952-7277. This will allow Conservation Officers to assess the risk levels and work towards a safe solution for both the community and the wildlife involved.

 

As long as a bear is moving through a community, is not lingering, and is not interacting with people or our property, there is no conflict. There are many situations where a bear moving through the community is to be expected, such as when they are trying to access a natural food source like a fish-bearing stream, or trying to access foraging opportunities on the other side of what was once their normal home range.


When bears quit moving through the community and start using it as a foraging area for human-provided foods, then conflicts may develop. Bears that start using human-provided foods (anthropogenic foods, in the words of the biologists) can become food-conditioned. A habituated bear tolerates humans in much closer proximity than what is safe for both bears and humans. This increases the potential for a dangerous interaction between the bears and humans.


Garbage

  • Store garbage in a secure building until collection day or consider purchasing a bear-resistant household cart. (2024 02 05 update - bear-resistant carts are hard to come by, and the RDOS is negotiating a waste collection contract, which may require different carts... so hold off on this suggestion if you can)

  • Ensure bins are tightly closed.

  • Regularly wash all recycling items and clean the garbage or recycling bins.

  • Do not leave garbage in the back of a truck, even if it has a canopy.

  • If you cannot store garbage securely, freeze smelly items and add them to the bin only on the morning of collection.

 

Fruit Trees

  • Pick all ripe fruit.

  • If any overripe fruit falls, ensure it is regularly cleaned up.

  • Maintain healthy trees with annual maintenance and fruit reduction methods.  

 

The Report All Poachers and Polluters (RAPP) hotline should be used to report wildlife-human interactions where public safety may be at risk: 1-877-952-7277

 

For further information, please contact Shelley Fiorito, RDOS Projects Coordinator at 250-490-4110 or email rdos@wildsafebc.com.

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