On behalf of the grizzly and black bears, to help maintain peace and save lives, it must be remembered that as settlers we live in their home as well, the forests, and need to learn to co-exist, maintaining nature’s balance.
To help stop negative human encounters, killing of the bears and maintaining a harmonic existence, preventative measures for a safe and trouble free relationship include:
A) Being responsible for one’s waste, garbage and compost. Locked in secure containers or left inside a building can prevent the bears from accessing the food source and remaining in the area, waiting for more.
With the request for more “bear safe” garbage cans, challenged with economic funding, the distance for purchasing them and to help provide a “creative community based solution…” (Councillor Paula Kiss), perhaps the project could be combined with educational training at the high school/college welding schools, giving the students a building project as well as educational stewardship with the issue.
B) Electric fences, including solar powered, are a proven method of preventing the bears from eating one’s fruit from the trees, or attacking other small animals; ie. chickens. Protective measures include: maintaining awareness of your surroundings and carrying noise makers (ie. bells or whistles and perhaps bear spray).
From experience, a whistle with short loud blasts is successful at scaring a black bear away. When on forest adventures, it is important to leave one ear open when listening to headphones and remember: “pack it in, pack it out.”
Please be mindful that these animals are simply living their lives, wandering their way and need not be a threat to any human. Have a safe and happy summer.