Bear Incident on North Nechako Road
Prince George, B.C.- The sight of a carcass of a black bear on North Nechako Road in Prince George, has sparked concern from area residents.
The animal was shot by Prince George RCMP Detachment officers on early Sunday near the entrance to Edgewood Terrace. Area residents report hearing three shots. That information has yet to be confirmed, but there was at least one spent shell casing left on the roadway.
Prince George Detachment Superintendent Warren Brown says officers were called to the area early Sunday after receiving a report a bear had been struck by a vehicle. He says when the officers arrived on scene, the animal was gravely injured and unable to move off the roadway. Officers made the decision to shoot the bear to end its suffering.
The carcass of the bear was in the bicycle lane of North Nechako Road for several hours, until it was removed by a Conservation Officer.
It has been a little more than a decade since a policy was put in place at the local detachment which puts restrictions on when a local RCMP Officer can put down an animal. That policy came into play following an incident in the Hart when local Mounties shot and killed a sow and her cubs in a residential area.
Superintendent Brown says while his officers would prefer not to have to carry out such acts, there are times when it can’t be avoided as a Conservation Officer may not be available to do the deed in a timely manner which could prolong an animal’s suffering.
What was the issue ten years ago when the RCMP put down a bear?
The sow and cubs were in a residential back yard… numerous shots fired.. local residents upset.
The RCMP were prohibited by law from putting down an animal unless there was immediate threat to life other than that they had to wait for the conservation service to respond which could be anywhere from a few minutes to several hours of waiting. The law was changed to reflect animal needs if it was badly injured they can put an animal down if it appears ok it requires a conservation officer to make the call.
While on the way to set up for a public event arrived on the scene just before 9:00 am, a very unpleasant sight. It would be very easy to comment on the aftermath of the bear having to be humanly euthanized on the side of the road but would like to focus on the events prior to this bear being struck. Several residents commented that over the past week and on Sunday morning garbage has been spread out across lawns. The expelled stool from the bear contained birdseed and apple remnants. This unfortunate accident may well have been avoided if the bear was not able to access these food sources. Thankfully the driver did the right thing and reported the incident so that this animal did not have to suffer for any great deal of time.
For those interested it was a very healthy male yearling, it took some effort placing this bear in the back of the COS vehicle.
This is a normal event in the Central and Northern Interior as it is everywhere else. Bear injured bear dead, end of story. People secure your garbage. AND, it’s time for a bear and wolf cull.
There’s no need to go after the wolves & bears. They’re just doing what they do while humans invade their territory.
Might be time for an “IDIOT” cull.
Don’t know if you specifically need a cull for bears but there sure are a lot of them over the last few years. I have lived on the edge of town right next to the bush for almost 20 years and the past 3 years have been nuts with bears. Based on the number of cubs sitting in rescue, they are not having a problem surviving.
“there was at least one spent shell casing left on the roadway”
Thanks for the follow up to the report Dave, it’s clear you really love these animals. Hopefully your message of don’t feed the bears doesn’t fall on deaf ears.
Bylaw states that garbage cans are NOT to be put out on the street before 4am, garbage collection starts at 8am. It is common to see half of the cans sitting out on the street by 9pm on the night prior to collection day. Now the bears have easy access to this food source for an additional 7hrs (or more) overnight. How much is this practice adding to the problem? Why isnt the Bylaw officers out ticketing these violators? Bylaws are absolutely useless if there is nobody out to enforce them.
An wounded bear, or an aggressive garbage bear is a public safety hazard and must be dealt with. Also, I agree with putting any animal down if it is grievously injured.
Whether an animal is put down by a CO or a police officer makes no difference to me, as long as nobody is put in harm’s way because of it and an animal is not left to suffer. I am certain that most people dont want to be witness to it but these things must happen. If we as humans can remove much of the temptation of an easy meal, this would not be such a big problem.
watchdog, I agree completely!
We have bear in the neighbourhood every year and yet as you say, there are garbage cans out all over the night before garbage pickup. Not only that, but you can see lots and lots of garbage cans sitting outside, beside the garages, all week long!
So, where the heck are our overpaid and terribly underworked bylaw officers? There is no reason, none at all, none whatsoever why a bylaw officer cannot be on shift in the evening, driving around in neighbourhoods the night before scheduled garbage pickup days. They would easily go through several bylaw infraction books each night. This would piss off a lot of people, but they might finally get the message!
Better that some of these people have to pay a ticket in order for this to sink in than to have a bear become habitualized and end up being put down!
I don’t see a problem with RCMP putting an injured animal. There are far fewer conservation officers then there used to be so time is usually of the essence. I’d rather have a trained cop with a firearm taking care of the situation as opposed to a suffering animal, or worse yet, an injured animal that gets it’s second wind and creates more problems.
I’d hate for residents to live in the Peace Region where a CO is often not available to put down the animals in a timely fashion so the RCMP do it and then the animal is drug off the road, if possible to be picked up by a CO later. It is most definitely not unheard of and moose are the unlucky ones. Just be lucky we have a few CO officers here in PG and many of them are probably out dealing with nuisance bears. Can’t do everything on time!
“The carcass of the bear was in the bicycle lane of North Nechako Road for several hours, until it was removed by a Conservation Officer.”
No!!!! Not in the bike lane! Does that carcass have no respect for the 10 people who cycle in this city? :)
Did anyone run into it so they could sue the RCMP for leaving it on the side of the road while they waited for the CO?
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