Relocated white bear returns to Elkford from wild

One of the two white bear cubs that were caught in Elkford and relocated last year, has returned.

  • Aug. 22, 2013 5:00 a.m.

Angela Treharne/Fernie Free Press

One of the two white bear cubs that were caught in Elkford and relocated last year, has returned.

The female white bear, and her sister, were caught last year in Elkford, earmarked, and relocated up the Elk Valley, around 70 km away.

One was seen later last year in Kananaksis. Then, on Tuesday morning, conservation officer Frank de Boon received reports that one had been spotted back in Elkford, on Aspen Crescent and Newgate Crescent.

He is not sure whether it is the same bear, but he said he is not surprised to see one of the cubs back in Elkford.

“This is why we rarely relocate black bears,” said De Boon. “They often return back to where they came from, or just go somewhere else and get in trouble.

“It’s hard to say what will happen to this one. It sounds like she is getting into garbage again. She may be a candidate for the zoo, because she is unusual, but that’s probably her only hope.”

The three-year-old bear is not reported to be showing any aggression.

Kathy Murray, Fernie WildSafeBC Community Coordinator, said the problem is people not securing their garbage properly.

“Garbage collection day is Thursday in Elkford,” she said. “It is crucial that people keep their garbage secured until then. And use a bear proof garbage can. If you don’t have one, the District of Elkford can give you one. Give them call.

“This is a really sad situation for this white bear.”