Learn about living with bears; creating bear smart communities; recreating in bear country; bear safety at work; and managing bears (for wildlife officials).

Bearsmart Blog

Cumulative events – do they matter?

Sadly this month another bear was shot and killed in Whistler. He took the opportunity to enter a house in the blink of an eye while residents ferried items back and forth between the house and the car.

But, a bear entering a house! Come on? Surely this was just a “bad bear” and not the fault of us humans.

It is easy for society to place blame on the residents of the house, or even the bear. However, when you dig beneath the surface it becomes clear that many events led to the preventable death of this bear. Perhaps this bear was the one that raided your compost pile in the back yard, the one you saw feeding at your bird-feeder, feeding in your mountain-ash trees or rummaging through your recycling. Perhaps he was even INSIDE your house at some time. But phewf! that ended OK – nobody got hurt. It was just once and he was not killed in YOUR house. Off the hook.


Cumulative events led to the death of this bear; and most bears killed due to conflict. So next time you think that one incident – perhaps a raid of your garbage can – is no big deal, think again. Your actions are contributing to the problem. So please:

  • Keep doors and windows locked and closed
  • Store all bear attractants in a bear-proof manner; or get rid of ’em. Period.