Thousands of bears are killed each year in North America. Traditionally, wildlife officials have managed human-bear conflict situations through hunting regulations, destruction and relocation, but these methods have not prevented conflicts or even reduced their numbers.
As people move into bear country in unprecedented numbers, there is increased concern for public safety, biodiversity conservation and property damage. The ineffectiveness of traditional conflict-reduction methods and the need to maximize resources point to a clear need for a new approach.
In order to successfully reduce and manage human-bear conflicts, it is first necessary to minimize the number of potentially dangerous encounters through effective waste management, education and enforcement.
It is equally important to deal with any remaining conflicts in a non-lethal manner. Non-lethal alternatives provide an effective management tool and incorporate a more holistic, long-term approach to bear management.
A problem for bears is not so much what we don’t know, it’s what we think we know that isn’t true. – Dr. Lynn Rogers
Course: Understanding and Managing Black Bear Behaviour
This full-day or half-day introductory workshop is geared to professionals who are involved in attending bear complaints and/or choosing non-lethal management options. We use actual video segments to familiarize officers with the types of bear behaviours they may encounter on the job and show non-lethal tactics in action. The information gained from this session may be useful to assess situations that will lead to a better understanding of a bear’s behaviour and result in decisions by officers that will ensure public safety, officer safety and bear safety. This is a good opportunity for an open discussion of common conflict scenarios or individual situations officers have actually dealt with in the past. (Length: half or full day)
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The decisions we make about how we will manage bears depend on our attitudes and values related to bears. Because black and grizzly bears did and will continue to inflict occasional serious injury on people, they must create benefits for other people to counterbalance the trauma that they bring to a few…. Most people, I believe are willing to accept the slight chance of injury in order to maintain both species of bears.