There are currently several bears foraging for food in different areas of Revelstoke. Sue Davies of Revelstoke Bear Aware is stressing the importance of reporting human-bear conflicts to the Conservation Officer Service’s toll-free RAPP line (1-877-952-7277).
“I’d like people to understand that the COs won’t necessarily turn up to shoot a bear if it is reported,” she said in statement released late Tuesday evening. “In most cases they simply track the movements and habits of bears through the reported sightings, and only if they think there is a significant threat to human safety will they act to remove the bear.”
The Bear Aware coordinator released the statement because “many people believe they can’t call the COs now because they think there isn’t an officer to come, so they call me instead.”
However, there are officers in Golden and Vernon who respond to calls from Revelstoke.
“And if we call about all the conflicts that are actually occurring here in Revelstoke maybe the ministry will get the message that we really do need a local Revelstoke Officer,” Davies said. “Also, Bear Aware provides education about reducing conflict with bears, but is not equipped to manage the bears if conflict does arise. It is really important to call the CO Service so that the information about the whereabouts of bears gets to the right people, including being sent to Bear Aware to be entered into our web based bear-sightings map.”
The 24-hour RAPP line gets you through to a call center that will direct your call to the nearest Conservation Officer. The Conservation Officers from Golden are also working with Revelstoke-based Natural Resource Officers who can help out with some of the duties of Conservation Officers. Be ready to tell the operator your address, the nature of the sighting, and if there is any food source that may have attracted the bear to the area. The number to call is 1-877-952-RAPP (7277).
For more information about reducing conflict with bears please see www.revelstokebearaware.org. To receive and share valuable local information about bear activity in Revelstoke, like Bear Aware on Facebook at www.Facebook.com/revelstokebearaware. To report bear sightings or conflicts with bears please call the 24-hour hotline at 1-877-952-RAPP (7277).