Local News

Young bear tranquillized near downtown Kelowna will be relocated

A young bear will soon be relocated after conservation officers tranquillized it near downtown Kelowna on Friday.

The black bear, which will be ear-tagged, is estimated to be four to five years old and weighs 250 pounds.

Conservation officers tranquillized the bear with two darts while it was in a tree not far from the former McDonald’s restaurant near the W.R. Bennett Bridge.

Sources told Global News that there had been multiple sightings of the bear in the hospital area in the past seven to 10 days.

“We’re trying to do everything to make sure (this bear) stays alive,” said Ken Owens of the Conservation Officer Service, who called this scenario “an extremely rare” survival incident.

The province has a line and website — Report All Poachers and Polluters — that the public can contact for wildlife sightings in urban areas.

The email you need for the day’s
top news stories from Canada and around the world.

WildSafe BC also has plenty of information on bear sightings and what to do.

“By calling the RAPP line, it puts sightings on our radar,” said Owens. “And then we have a WildSafe BC coordinator who can maybe do some prevention education to ensure we’re all doing the right thing.”

However, Owens added what he’d like to see is people change their habits, especially when it comes to leaving their garbage bins — a food reward for bears — out on city streets overnight.

“We live in a beautiful city, with a lot of green areas and we do have a lot of wildlife here. So (bear prevention) will not work unless everybody in the local area changes their behaviour.”

Owens said if the bear returns to the downtown area, then it’ll likely be euthanized.

“The toughest job we have to do is put down an animal,” he said. “But sometimes it has to be done. The people in this local area, if they can make sure they’re putting away their garbage away, so they’re not local attractants … we all have to change our behaviour.”

Owens also mentioned that communities should be using bear-resistant garbage cans.

“It’s so frustrating for us in the Conservation Officer Service because we have to do this more frequently than people think. If we can get everybody helping us out, we protect the wildlife and we protect people and property. It’s a win-win for everybody.”

&copy 2024 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.


Related Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *