WildSafeBC Nelson, Kaslo and Area D is now up and running for 2022.  

WildSafeBC is the provincial leader in preventing conflict with wildlife through collaboration, education and community solutions. It is a program managed and delivered by the BC Conservation Foundation in communities across BC. Lisa Thomson, as the WildSafeBC coordinator for WildsafeBC Nelson, Kaslo & Area D program, will be working in the community of Nelson and Kaslo to reduce human-wildlife conflict for the upcoming season. WildSafeBC acknowledges the land these programs operate on as the unceded traditional territories of the Sinixt, Syilx and Ktunaxa peoples. 

From May to November 30, 2022, Lisa will be involved in a number of initiatives including education programs, training sessions and outreach at various events. You will see her at events around town as she spreads the word about how to safely keep wildlife wild and communities safe. 

After emerging from their winter dens in April, bears will seek out protein-rich food sources in the valley bottoms where many communities are situated. There have already been several reports of black bears in the area and some of these bears have been observed accessing unnatural sources of food. When bears have access to garbage and other unnatural food sources, conflict situations can develop. Bears may become food conditioned, and/or habituated to people. Habituated bears tolerate humans in much closer proximity than what is safe for both bears and humans. Food-conditioned bears may become very motivated to access unnatural food sources, which can lead to property damage or increased concerns regarding public safety. It is particularly unfortunate to see sow bears teaching cubs to forage for unnatural food among people – potentially leading to future conflicts and shorter lives.  

The most effective action we can take to keep bears wild and our communities safe is to keep all attractants secure, including: 

  • Do not store garbage or other organic waste outdoors. If you have curbside collection, only put the containers out on the morning of collection day – never the night before. Make sure recyclables have been cleaned. 
  • Protect fruit trees with electric fencing or pick fruit early and do not let windfall accumulate. Ensure your compost is well-managed and does not smell. 
  • Avoid feeding birds when bears are most active (April to November) and ensure bird feeders are always inaccessible to non-target species such as bears, deer, squirrels and raccoons. Do not let seed accumulate that may attract rats and other rodents. 
  • Feed pets indoors and keep pets inside at night. 
  • Keep your barbecue clean by burning off uncooked food and emptying the grease container. 
  • For further information on reducing human-wildlife conflict visit our website wildsafebc.com  follow WildSafeBC Nelson or WildsafeBC Kaslo on Facebook, or contact your local community coordinator, Lisa, at nelson@wildsafebc.com kaslo@wildsafebc.com or 250-551-6376. 

Please report sightings of bears, wolves or cougars in urban/residential areas, or wildlife in conflict, to the Conservation Officer Service at 1-877-952-7277.