4 bears euthanized after being ‘conditioned for food’ in southwest Calgary – Calgary


Bears that were seen raiding unsecured trash cans and compost bins in southwest Calgary have been euthanized, Alberta Fish and Wildlife officials confirmed Monday.

Wildlife officers had received calls about a black bear sow and three cubs in the Discovery Ridge neighborhood, which neighbors Griffith Woods Park and the undeveloped Tsuut’ina Nation.

The calls in early October were just sightings, but over time there were more and more reports of bears entering trash cans and compost bins.

On October 22, officers closed off some areas and set up a pair of booby traps in the park. On October 28, one black bear and three juvenile bears were captured and all area closures were lifted.

Read more:

Residents urged to secure trash cans after bear capture in southwest Calgary

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« The bears were heavily food conditioned and had been seen scavenging for more than four weeks, » a statement from Fish and Wildlife said.

« Food-conditioned bears associate people with food, which poses a serious public safety risk because associating people with food can cause hungry bears to harm people. »

The bears were euthanized after reviewing the black bear response guide.

“The Government of Alberta does not take this step lightly, but believes it is the best decision, both to prevent future conflict and public safety issues while encouraging best practices that will allow people and bears to coexist in the future. Several factors lead to the decision to euthanize a bear rather than taking other options, such as relocating it,” Fish and Wildlife said.

Click to play video: 'Alberta Fish and Wildlife continues to search for bear cub in southwest Calgary'

Alberta Fish and Wildlife continues to search for a bear cub in southwest Calgary

Officials stress the importance of being « BearSmart » given that at this time of year bears are increasingly focused on eating more to prepare for hibernation.

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With natural food sources like berries that have been eaten or dried, bears will travel farther to find food. Unsecured garbage cans or compost bins can end up being a risk to public safety.

Fish and wildlife officers are also advising not to leave pet food outside, not to use bird feeders between April 1 and November 30, to clean barbecue grills and smokers and cleaning or removing gardens or fruit trees.

Read more:

7 Bears Euthanized at Crowsnest Pass Following Human Interactions

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