Alberta designates grizzly bears a threatened species

Posted on: June 3rd, 2010

Press release excerpt:

Alberta designates grizzly bears a threatened species

Population and habitat mapping provide key information

Edmonton… The Alberta government has designated grizzly bears as a threatened species in an effort to better protect the bears and sustain the provincial population.
The designation is based on cutting-edge population research and habitat data, as well as a recommendation from the Endangered Species Conservation Committee (ESCC), a group of stakeholders including ranchers, industry, academics, wildlife managers and conservation interests…”

Read the full press release here.

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The Government of Alberta, Parks Division, concocted some short videos explaining how to avoid bear encounters and what to do in case of a bear encounter. Remember, Alberta and British Columbia are “bear countries” after all.

First video transcript:

“As park interpreters, we meet a lot of people who want to know what to do if a bear attacks.
But focusing on bear attacks really misses the point when we talk about bear and human safety. And it actually turns bears into something they aren’t.
Bears aren’t savage killers!…

About the only thing the bears in the Rocky Mountains viciously tear apart are wasps nests, ant hills and the roots of plants that make up their diet.
That’s right! About 75 to 90% of a bear’s diet is made up of plants–the rest being insects, ground squirrels, and the occasional dead animal.
By learning and practicing a few basic safety procedures while in bear country, your visit to the wilderness will be safe and enjoyable.
And by reducing conflicts with bears, you’re also helping to protect them.
You’ll also be protecting yourself and other wilderness visitors.”

Second video transcript:
“The first and most important thing to remember about bears in the wild is that like any other wild animal they can be unpredictable. You’ve entered their home…
So when hiking, biking, or riding a horse it’s important to let them know that you’re there.
Make plenty of noise especially when you’re near steams, hiking through dense bush or when approaching a blind corner. But bear bells aren’t loud enough.
We recommend loud conversation, singing a song, or the good old-fashioned “Yo Bear!” at regular intervals.
When vehicle camping, make certain to keep your food locked in your vehicle — even when you’re only away from your site for a few minutes, or when you go
inside your tent or trailer. Remember bears can smell food that’s in a cooler, so lock your cooler in your vehicle.
Dispose of your garbage and food scraps in sealed bags in a bear-proof bin.
And get rid off your dish or wash water by dumping it in a campground toilet.
In the backcountry, cooking and eat at least 100 metres from your tent. And never put any food, toilet article, candy, or anything else that has

a scent into your tent. Even toothpaste smells like food to a bear.
Store your pack in a backcountry locker, on a pack rack, or suspend it on a rope between two trees.
If you see a bear, the first thing to do is to give him some space.
Remember, this is the bear’s home and you’re just the visitor.
All you have to do is back away slowly, return the way you came, or take a wide detour around the area.

The bear doesn’t want to be around you anymore than you want to be around the bear.
By the time you get back home, you’ll have a really great story to embellish.”

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