The Nelson City Campground where a black bear met its end last week.

Bear comes too close for comfort at Nelson campground

A black bear that wandered into the Nelson City Campground last week was destroyed by the local conservation officer.

A black bear that wandered into the City Campground last week was destroyed by the local conservation officer.

Just after 1 p.m. Tuesday, panicked campers alerted campground staff to a bear in the immediate area. The bruin had wandered down to the campground on High Street through the forested area behind the site.

Officials were called to the scene and concerned campers hunkered down in the facility’s shelter to avoid escalating the situation.

Before the conservation officer and Nelson Police Department members arrived, the bear was scared off. It rambled up the bank behind the campground and climbed high into a tree.

“If we are called out to deal with a bear, unless the bear finds its own way back into the bush, the results are not the best,” said Nelson Police Department Sgt. Janet Scott-Pryke. “But we don’t have much of a choice.”

Because the frightened bear showed no signs of coming down from where it had climbed, when the conservation officer arrived the decision was made to destroy the animal.

“There are a lot of people in that area with the campground and it’s a residential area,” said Scott-Pryke. “It’s amazing that it got down that far, but it’s not the first time this has happened.”

Though Nelson police officers assisted, it was the conservation officer who shot the bear.

“We have to assess the situation and make sure it can be done safely,” Scott-Pryke said of the process of firing within city limits. “We don’t just shoot willy nilly and everything is taken into account. Public safety is obviously paramount.”

Officials are asking the public to be diligent with garbage disposal so that situations like last week’s can be avoided in the future.

“If the bear reached a point where it has lost its aversion to people and become used to eating garbage instead of foraging for natural diet in the bush… it makes it easy for them and they stay,” said Scott-Pryke.

The veteran police officer said it’s upsetting for all involved when bears need to be destroyed.

“Thankfully we don’t have to do it very often,” she said. “For the officers involved, it’s not an easy thing to do because we don’t want to have to kill an animal.”

To report bear problems call the RAPP line at 1-877-952-7277. If you have questions about solutions to human-bear conflicts email the local Bear Aware office at nelson@bearaware.bc.ca.

Just Posted

Slocan Valley to be ‘lit up’ with high-speed internet in 12 months

125 kilometres of fibre-optic cable to be laid from Nakusp to Playmore Junction

LETTERS: In support of student climate strikers

From readers Tia Leschke and Sharon Inkpen

Kootenay Musical Theatre Society ready to make a deal with the Devil

The new group will put on an original show in October at the Capitol Theatre

Touchstones releases 2019 exhibition schedule

The museum has seven exhibits set for the year

Nelson councillor starts national municipal climate group

Climate Leadership Caucus has 57 members including seven mayors

B.C. researcher says device mimics parent’s touch to help babies cope with pain

Calmer device is a rectangular platform that replaces a mattress inside an incubator

Tofino’s housing crisis causing some to seek shelter at the local hospital

Tofino’s housing crisis is pushing the town’s ‘hidden homeless’ population into the forefront.

Sentencing judge in Broncos crash calls for carnage on highways to end

Judge Inez Cardinal sentenced Jaskirat Singh Sidhu to eight years

2 fires in Victoria caused by cigarettes prompts warning from deputy fire chief

Two separate fires caused by cigarette butts were avoidable

‘Families torn apart:’ Truck driver in fatal Broncos crash gets 8-year sentence

Judge Inez Cardinal told court in Melfort, Sask., that Sidhu’s remorse and guilty plea were mitigating factors

Boy who went missing from park remains largest probe in Victoria police history

The four-year old Victoria boy went missing without a trace on March 24, 1991

WestJet sticking with Boeing 737 Max once planes certified to fly

WestJet had expected to add two more of the planes this year to increase its fleet to 13

B.C. driver caught going 207 km/h on motorcycle along Okanagan Highway

A motorcyclist was caught by Kelowna RCMP going 207 km/h on Highway 97C

Protective human chain forms around B.C. mosque for Friday prayer

Vancouver Islanders stand arm-in-arm to show support in aftermath of New Zealand shootings

Most Read