Hikers and North Shore dwellers beware: black bears are coming out of hibernation, and they’re hungry. The first bear of the season was spotted on Riverside Drive in North Vancouver, according to Christine Miller with the North Shore Black Bear Society.
“It’s a very common area – there’s lots of natural corridors leading down to the Seymour River,” Miller tells Vancity Buzz.
According to Millers, the end of hibernation season for bears isn’t as predictable as you might think; last year, they were fairly late to make their debut.
“We don’t really know whether it’s weather dependent or perhaps how heavy the bears get before hibernation – there’s a whole bunch of different things that could have an impact on when they come out.”
When asked how many bear sightings there were last year, Miller couldn’t provide exact numbers since one bear could be spotted multiple times. It makes estimating bear populations difficult.
Now that bears are making an appearance in North Shore neighbourhoods again, she wants people to take extra precautions.
“Our message continues to be that we encourage people to use the green can program, which is the kitchen scraps program. Keep odorous things frozen until collection day.”
“Bird feeders should have small quantities of seed if people are going to insist on feeding the birds, even when there’s natural food out for them,” Miller says.
Keep in mind, if you’re a North Shore resident and bring your trash to the curb before the morning of collections, you could be fined, but it’s all in an effort to create a peaceful living situation.
“We’re trying to reduce the conflicts between people and wildlife,” says Miller.
If you want to learn more about bears, the North Shore Black Bear Society is hosting an event for International Bear Day on Saturday, April 2. Visit northshorebears.com.