photo by Diginatur
Although it might not seem like it from the weather, it's springtime on Burnaby Mountain. Our bear neighbours have recently woken up and are very active looking for food and exploring their home. We can help them to survive and thrive by keeping a respectful distance.
If you see a bear it can be tempting to get a closer look or take a photo or video. But these actions are dangerous for both the bear and for humans. You should never intentionally approach a bear - this puts you too close and can be distressing to them, especially when cubs are close. Even though a bear may seem peaceful, they are large, strong, fast animals whose behaviour can be hard to predict.
Bears that lose their fear of humans are also at risk of becoming aggressive, leading to them being killed to protect the public. In 2019 a bear was killed by the Conservation Service on Burnaby Mountain because it had developed a habit of approaching picnickers and swiped at two people.
If you spot a bear while driving you may feel the impulse to stop your car to get a better look. Please never stop your car on the road unsafely, especially roads like University Drive or Gaglardi Way which have fast moving traffic, poor visibility due to curves, and in places a minimal road shoulder.
Please also keep in mind that wildlife are commonly spotted along Gaglardi Way and University Drive and can run out into the road suddenly. Sticking to the speed limit on these roads reduces the risk of a collision should an animal dart in front of your vehicle.
Our mountain is a beautiful place that we share with many animals. We encourage you to visit WildSafe BC's website to learn more about how to coexist safely with wildlife, and what to do if you encounter a bear or other wild animal.
The Community Association is looking for ways to reduce the risk of human-wildlife conflict in our community. If you have ideas to share please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.