Cub “Home Alone”
Prince George, B.C.- It may be cold, and one would think the bears have hunkered down for the season, but that was not the case for a cub in Prince George.
Deputy Chief Chris Doyle of the BC Conservation Officer Service says a lone cub was discovered in Prince George yesterday. “The temperature was minus 24 and an orphaned bear cub was found on a road, alone. There was no sight of the sow bear. Conservation Officers were able to capture this bear, and it is being transported to the Northern Lights Wildlife Sanctuary near Smithers where it will be kept over the winter and hopefully released back in its home range next spring.”
The outlook for the cub’s future looks good says Doyle ” This bear wasn’t a conflict animal, it had no conflict history and therefore was determined to be a good candidate to (go to) the rehab facility.”
Doyle says despite the cold weather, some bears have not yet denned, and are continuing to search for food. He reminds the public that it is illegal to feed wildlife “Birdfeeders are a powerful attractant to bring bears into communities. We need people to help us getting these bears to den by removing attractants where they are accessible to bears.”
Human wildlife conflicts have not taken a break in the province with Doyle saying there was a serious incident near Smithers involving a wolf. Last week in Smothers a wolf stalked and killed a cross country skier’s dog. the skier was with his dog on the trails when the dog was attacked and killed by the wolf. The wolf then followed the skier to the parking lot area. C.Os did respond and investigated the incident. The trails were closed for a period of time, but I have been advised that as of yesterday, the trails have been re-opened and there has been no further conflict reported with those wolves.”
Off Road Vehicle enforcement continues and will be active to ensure snowmobilers are not accessing areas which are off limits in an effort to protect herds of Mountain Caribou. “It is an on going issue” says Doyle, who says snowmobilers must check to ensure they are not entering zones within the Omineca-Peace region, and Thompson-Kootenay areas. “COs will be conducting enforcement operations this winter to protect Mountain Caribou. The high country of B.C.’s interior wet belt provides good habitat which is ideal for Mountain Caribou, and is also attractive to snowmobilers and other back country users. Snowmobilers do affect Mountain Caribou as it may cause them to move to less suitable habitat where the foraging is not as efficient and deeper terrain may cause hazards, deplete their energy and packed trails ( by snowmobilers) can provide easy access for predators.” Doyle says patrols will be done by ground and air to spot and apprehend anyone who ventures into the closed areas. A violation could result in a fine of up to $50 thousand dollars.