Communities in the Cariboo can expect to see a familiar face teaching them how to avoid human-wildlife conflicts.
Ted Traer is starting his second year as the WildSafeBC Coordinator for the region.
Last year Traer said he was busy doing door-to-door information delivery campaigns, garbage tagging, and visiting schools teaching the younger generation.
“One of the big things I did last year was Wild Safe Ranger presentations to schools. I talked to about over 850 kids I think in the different School Districts, 100 Mile House, Williams Lake, and Quesnel. I talked to the kids about interaction with wildlife and how we can all do things in a reasonable way and being safe at the end of the day.”
Traer also couldn’t stress enough the importance of garbage and the effect it has on the wildlife in our region.
“Putting out garbage bins the night before pickup is an attractant, particularly to bears. They can smell over a kilometer away, they have a nasal cavity the size of a toonie. They’re very intelligent animals and once they figure out where a food source is, they keep coming back time and time again. And it’s always a frustration we get a food-conditioned bear because they can’t be untrained. They’ve trapped bears and taken them two or three mountain ranges over and a couple of weeks later they’re right back at the exact same spot.”
Traer noted typically when bears come out of hibernation they would be feeding on grasses and horsetails but we’ve had a cold spring so things are slow in coming back so they’re still going to go to that easy food reward, garbage.