In an effort to reduce bear / human conflict and improve safety in our communities, Bella Coola Valley Tourism (BCVT), in partnership with the Grizzly Bear Foundation, is offering valley residents 50% off the purchase price. high-end electric fence components. .
BCVT recently received a grant from the Grizzly Bear Foundation to purchase electric fence components valued at $ 5,000 to provide an incentive to residents.
“These are all high quality, rugged components,” said Tom Hermance, President of BCVT. “There have been instances where a bear may be indifferent to a poorly designed or undersized electric fence, especially if it is conditioned to return to a food source. We wanted these components to have more than enough power and to deter any bears from entering. When properly sized and installed, bear-proof electric fences are extremely effective. Just take a walk along Highway 20 to see the difference between fruit trees protected by electric fences and those without. It becomes clear that properly sized, properly installed electric fences work and bears quickly learn to avoid fenced trees.
Hermance said the plan is to use all the profits for a similar promotion next year.
Bears are motivated by food. Once bears locate accessible fruit trees or other human-supplied attractants, they linger or even stay close to this food source. It is the attraction provided by humans that invites bears to stay. This creates conflict between residents as well as with other bears and raises safety concerns for the entire community.
“Safety concerns aside, the destroyed bears are bad for the reputation of the valley and for our tourism economy. It is absolutely essential for the valley’s ecosystems and the tourism businesses that support populations to maintain healthy and stable numbers. Employees of more than 60 local businesses are at risk when bear numbers become too low. We are losing our biggest advantage over other tourist destinations in British Columbia, ”he said.
“BCVT is committed to adopting proactive and responsible behavior in order to reduce attractants for bears in our communities. We urge every inhabitant of the valley to take preventative and responsible action to protect their own property. Properly installed electric fences protect families, communities and wildlife. Together we can make our valley a caring and safe place for everyone. “