250 News - Your News, Your Views, Now

October 28, 2017 12:21 am

Underfunding, Grizzly Bear Hunt Feature Prominently at Wildlife Symposium

Saturday, February 6, 2016 @ 6:58 PM
From left, Green Party leader and MLA Andrew Weaver, Conservative Party leader Dan Brooks, and NDP MLA Katrine Conroy - photos 250News

From left, Green Party leader and MLA Andrew Weaver, Conservative Party leader Dan Brooks, and NDP MLA Katrine Conroy – photos 250News

Prince George, B.C. – 60 or so people were treated to a wildlife symposium at the Canfor Theatre at UNBC this afternoon.


MLA Mike Morris did not attend today’s symposium

Hosted by the Spruce City Wildlife Association (SCWA), it included representation from the NDP, the Conservatives, and the Green Party (Liberal MLA Mike Morris was invited but did not attend).

With Morris absent, those present criticized the provincial government for not spending enough money on wildlife management.

“We feel there’s been chronic underfunding for fish and wildlife for a number of years,” said NDP MLA Katrine Conroy. “And we need to ensure there’s a better funding formula and you only need to look at Washington State for instance to see the type of funding they have implemented.”

She said in 2014 alone, $14.6 million was raised for wildlife management through the collection of hunting and fishing licenses there.

Conservative Party leader Dan Brooks added more needs to done in “an indirect aspect,” also, namely better land use planning.

“High impact users of the land base have a tremendous influence on wildlife in this province,” he said.

“If you’re not planning what’s happening that’s a huge component of land based planning. Making funding available to mitigate impacts for those industrial activities. If not then your wildlife will suffer and this is the primary reason why we’ve seen wildlife decline in this province.”

Weaver concurred with Brooks: “I think Dan knocked it out of the park,” he said.

“It’s very easy to say more money for biologists etc in the provincial government but you must couple that with indirect revenue and an appropriate approach to managing our resources because companies only follow regulations and they’re all trying to make money and if the regulations are such that you go cut this, cut that, you end up with a patchwork of things happening with no overall sense.”

Another topic raised was the always controversial grizzly bear hunt, something Brooks, a guide outfitter by trade, said he unabashedly supports.

“I’m probably the only one here who has killed a grizzly bear,” he boasted. “It’s really hard to convince somebody who’s never done it how important it is to you and your family, to a hunting community. And I strongly support the consumption of meat.”

Weaver called the hunt “an incredibly emotional issue,” noting he tabled a private members bill recently to help curb trophy hunting by forcing hunters to keep the meat of the animals they kill.

“The average urban environmentalist is not concerned about hunting, they recognize we’ve done hunting since humans have been on earth, what they’re concerned about is foreigners coming to our province, finding a majestic beast, killing that beast and taking home a souvenir and the meat not being used.”

Conroy said the NDP didn’t have a specific policy on the hunt, instead stating her party would survey Northerners to hear how they feel about the issue.

“The problem is decisions are made in Victoria, people don’t come out and talk to you and you’re the one’s out in the field,” she said. “So I think it’s important to hear what you people think.”

Weaver said he was disappointed Mike Morris opted not to attend.

“I do understand ministers have a lot on their schedule and it’s a Saturday of a long weekend but it’s a Saturday of a long weekend in your own riding and this event has been planned for many months,” he said.

“I added this to my calendar several months ago because I thought this was a priority.”

Today’s event will be the first of several similar symposiums that will be held in a number of communities such as Williams Lake, Kamloops and Kelowna.


Underfunded, yes you bet , word was the Conservation officers could not even get out to the bush this year, because there was no money for gas. Yet I personal seen forest workers driving all over the place, including using forest trucks for personal errands, coffee, groceries, etc, and they were on the clock.

doneright, that forestry pickup thing is a constant. Some from Vanderhoof come to PG for govt supplies and spend the rest of the day shopping here.

Done, don’t know where you were, but had some good chats with the CO’s out there last fall, and I don’t think gas was an issue.

Mike Morris may not have been able to make it, but there is no reason the BC Liberals couldn’t have had a representative there. Aren’t they interested in hearing from joe public? shame shame shame

Comments for this article are closed.