Masthead graphic based on a painting by Gudrun Thriemer.

Friday, June 27, 2008

"Complaint filed against coastal marina owner for killing a young grizzly bear," Valhalla Wilderness Watch, June 26, 2008.

The bear was sunk in a popular coastal anchorage by tying car batteries around its neck.

Two coastal bear researchers are asking the BC Conservation Officer Service to investigate what appears to be a senseless killing of a young grizzly bear by staff of Lagoon Cove Marina on Cracroft Island, near Knight Inlet on the BC coast.

The killing occurred on the evening of June 23 just after bear researcher Baden Cross anchored his boat near the marina. He and his wife heard a loud rifle shot from behind the marina. They then observed a tractor dragging a dead bear down to the water. Cross and his wife went to investigate and saw what appeared to them to be a subadult grizzly bear, freshly shot.

The marina staff then towed the dead bear out into the cove and sank it after tying 3 0r 4 old car batteries to its neck. When asked by Cross whether they had consulted with the Conservation Officer Service, staff said they had not. When asked if the young grizzly was a problem they said it was not, but they just did not want it "hanging around."

According to the independent bear biologist, Wayne McCrory, who works with Cross, "hanging around" is no excuse for killing an animal.

"In my opinion, a young grizzly bear is no more dangerous than the black bears that hang around the marina. There are other ways to deter such bears than killing them, such as using noisemakers and electric fencing. Whether the grizzly bear was attracted to fruit trees known to be on the property or other attractants such as garbage or barbecues should be subject to investigation."

Cross has since laid a complaint with the Conservation Officer Service requesting that the incident be thoroughly investigated and charges laid if necessary. Throwing dead batteries into the ocean should also be investigated under the Fisheries Act.

According to Cross and his wife, who were instrumental in helping save protected areas in the Great Bear Rainforest, they found the whole thing "shocking, inexcusable and a black eye for BC tourism."

For more information contact:
Wane McCrory: 250 358 7796
Baden Cross: 250 203 4003
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Heather said...

Absolutely sickening!
My husband and I were so shocked when we read about this in The Province newspaper we created a group on Facebook to show our outrage (as the wording might portray).
What frightens me most about this is the senseless violence and disregard for life in every sense.