Jill Hayward photo
Bears need natural food sources, not unsecured attractants and refuse, Sgt. Tracy Wallbauer of Terrace COS said on Oct. 16 of recent bear sightings in Prince Rupert.

Jill Hayward photo Bears need natural food sources, not unsecured attractants and refuse, Sgt. Tracy Wallbauer of Terrace COS said on Oct. 16 of recent bear sightings in Prince Rupert.

Be aware of bear

Bear sightings around Sloan and Omenica prompt COS to place trap and patrol area

A single shot heard in the west end of Prince Rupert close to 8 p.m. on Oct. 15, was not the Conservation Officer Services attempting to destroy a bear from the Sloan and Omenica area, the Conservation Officer Service (COS) said.

Sightings of a bear in the area prompted Conservation Officer Service to place a trap and complete patrols of the area.

“We also heard a shot, we think it may have been a bear banger but we could not confirm the source, it was not us,” Sgt. Tracy Wallbauer of the Terrace COS said.

“We do have a trap in that area. The bear has been frequenting residences and locating unsecured attractants, mostly refuse,” Wallbauer said.

Some city residents took to social media to express concerns of seeing COS vehicles patrol the area around the hospital.

The COS was in Prince Rupert during the evening in attempt to remove the bear, however were unsuccessful and that would explain COS vehicles in the area, Wallbauer said.

“The bear from reports, and from what we observed is severely conditioned to garbage and will be dispatched when located. There have been no near misses, but some surprise close encounters.”

Walbauer said some members of the public are very responsible with keeping attractants to a minimum, but other are not.

“This is disappointing when we encounter insecure garbage at residences where there is clearly opportunity to secure it in sheds or garages,” he said.

“Bears are extremely hungry at this time trying to prepare for winter and we ask all residences and business to be extra vigilant in managing attracts. Secure your refuse if you can, if not double or triple bag it and store it inside.”

Commercial businesses are advised to always ensure refuse bins have lids closed and are locked.

“Sightings are common as we live in bear country. If a bear finds nothing to feed on they will move off to nature food sources, do your part to keep wildlife safe,” Walbauer said.

Report any conflicts to RAPP 1-877-952-7277

K-J Millar | Journalist 
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