This image of a grizzly bear looking through Jim Lawrence's camera went viral online and has received attention from Global BC and CBC.

Kootenay grizzly photo goes viral

Jim Lawrence's photo has received thousands of views online and media coverage from Global BC and CBC.

While Kootenay wildlife photographer Jim Lawrence crept through the foliage near Revelstoke last week, tracking a shaggy, photogenic grizzly that he’d spotted meandering along the riverbanks fishing, he wasn’t thinking about Facebook. He wasn’t concerned with whether or not he could become Internet-famous. But since he posted a photo of his resulting close encounter with the five-year-old boar, he’s had an overwhelming outpouring of social media interest, with the image ultimately going viral.

And though he’s happy for the attention, Lawrence’s primary concern is reminding people everywhere to be mindful of their relationship with the wild animals that share our planet.

“The photo has gone viral because people are becoming aware that our wildlife are being seriously threatened,” said Lawrence, noting that global animal populations have been plummeting.

He posted the image to Facebook on Thursday.

“The grizzly in the photo was fishing for kokanee and making his way upstream. I set the camera up at an opening in the brush thinking I’d get a photo of him from across the way. I should have known better than to guess what a bear is going to do,” said Lawrence, whose wildlife photography is currently hanging at the Nelson Public Library.

“They say intelligent species are curious and the big bear was no exception. He approached the camera cautiously, sniffing deeply, then stood up for a closer inspection. For the longest time he studied the screen and buttons then with a huge long-nailed paw gently tugged on the strap.”

The weight of the camera’s lens caused the camera to pivot, which startled the bear.

“At which point he kind of shrugged and went back fishing,” said Lawrence.

In an interview with the Star, Lawrence shared some facts about grizzlies. Bear-viewing and bear photography is now worth between five and ten times more to the province than trophy hunting, but a provincial hunt is currently underway.

Lawrence said the reason the BC government allows the hunt, which is banned in Alberta, to continue is that they’re “scared of losing hunting votes.”

“But many hunters oppose the hunt and 90 percent of all BC residents in polls say they oppose the trophy hunt,” said Lawrence.

He encouraged all those who have a passion for animals and for preserving their habitats to express their displeasure with the hunt, and to encourage legislators to move towards banning it.

To see more of Lawrence’s work, visit http://www.kootenayreflections.com.

 

 

 

Just Posted

MP Cannings’ long-awaited wood-use bill passes in House vote

The private member’s bill is his first to pass the House, a rare feat for rookie MPs in opposition

Willie Thrasher and Linda Saddleback to play Nelson

The duo will be at the Civic Theatre on May 31

Grease comes to the Capitol Theatre

The production runs Thursday to Sunday

COLUMN: Watching water, thinking about elections

Columnist Donna Macdonald spoke to Prince George councillor Jillian Merrick about inclusiveness

UPDATE: City opens emergency operations centre

Lakeside Park, its sports fields, and parts of the waterfront could soon be underwater

Vancouver Island girl scores with winning song for BC Summer Games

‘Colours’ is a perfect theme for 2018 BC Summer Games

B.C. pipeline goes ahead despite scrapped Pacific Northwest LNG

NEB approves amendment for $1.4-billion natural gas North Montney Mainline Project

Update: Wildfire northwest of Kamloops jumps from 60 to 800 hectares

Ground crews and aircraft are responding to an estimated 50 hectare wildfire approximately 55 kilometers northwest of Kamloops, near the Deadman Vidette Road.

Feds limit chinook fishery to help killer whale recovery

Chinook is main food source for only 76 southern residents killer whales left

B.C. mom who died just before daughter’s wedding wanted family to be happy: twin

Ann Wittenberg was pulled into the ocean while on a surf board in Tofino last weekend

Courtenay-Alberni MP calls for lifeguards at popular surf spot near Tofino

The Pacific Rim National Park Reserve is defending its decision to cancel the surf guard program.

Harvey Weinstein to surrender in sex misconduct probe: officials

Would be first criminal charge against Weinstein since scores of women came forward

Second commercial acid spill in Kootenay city

Station 374 Trail was called to a Hazmat scene Wednesday night on Highway 3B

Kootenay village pot survey reveals a mixed bag

The majority of Warfield respondents were for cannabis sales, but with dispensary restrictions

Most Read