Separate cougar attacks in which two children were injured are among the human-wildlife encounters described in Thursday’s seasonal update from the BC Conservation Officer Service.
A cougar attacked a nine-year-old boy as he was playing in a creek with two other children on Aug. 12 near Christina Lake in the West Kootenay, deputy chief Chris Doyle said in a phone call with the media on Thursday.
The boy received minor injuries.
The conservation officers deployed tracking hounds, but the cougar managed to evade them in the steep terrain and hot weather.
Four days later, a four-year-old boy was attacked by a cougar in the Lower Morrissey Creek area, west of Fernie in the East Kootenay, while fishing with his family.
The father kicked the cougar off the son and threw rocks at it, Doyle said, but the animal continued to stalk the family as they retreated to their car. The boy was treated in hospital.
Again, the conservation officer sent out tracking hounds and set up traps, but were unable to find the cougar.
Radium Resort had to pay a total fine of $200,000 for violations under the Environmental Management Act, after staff had burned a pile of construction debris in February 2016 that in turn set fire to demolition waste from the Radium Resort Hotel.
The fire sent smoke and odour through the community of Radium Hot Springs, even promoting an air quality advisory from Interior Health. It took crews days to extinguish the flames.
The company pleaded guilty earlier this month in provincial court in Invermere.
On Vancouver Island, a dog walker was “run over” by a bear when the animal got into a scuffle with an off-leash dog at Matheson Park in Metchosin near Victoria.
“One of the dog walkers was caught in the middle, receiving minor injuries,” Doyle said.
“Many conflicts with bears are caused by off-leash dogs, so we’re reminding owners to control their pets, especially when in bear country.”
A Great Blue Heron, which is protected under both provincial and federal legislation, was recently shot in Vancouver. It’s also illegal to discharge a firearm within the Vancouver city limits. The investigation continues.
And in Mission, the driver of a Jeep was charged for causing damage to the environment after she “deliberately” drove into the foreshore of Stave Lake. All drivers of ATVs and other 4&4 vehicles are reminded to stick to marked trails.
Long weekend reminder
Bears will be getting hungry heading into the fall, Doyle said, and looking to pack on as many pounds as possible before hibernation.
He reminded the public to remove or block any bear attractants, such as unpicked tree fruit or, if you’re out camping, any food or garbage. You could be charged if you’re found to have been negligently storing attractants, he said.
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