LETTER: Human stupidity to blame for bear conflicts

Dear Editor:

Re: Conservation officers still searching for bear that bit 10-year-old girl

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As a very long time resident of North Vancouver who grew up in Lynn Valley, climbing and hiking in and around Rice Lake, and the mountains of Grouse, Cypress and Seymour, I was very aware that bears live and recreate in bush and mountain areas. Not too hard of a concept to realize, right?
The North Shore News quotes a "conservation" officer saying: "This is a bear that has lost its fear of people and is human habituated." ( ie. has become accustomed to people.)
The quote should have read: "This is a case where the public have once again demonstrated their stupidity in thinking that bears are pets or should not be feared, even when entering into their territory."
What sense does it make to kill a bear that is naturally curious and wants to protect its well-being and its territory from invasion by the public?
Suggestions: If you see something like a sign warning of a bear in the area, signs of bear activity or see Mrs. or Mr. Bear her/himself, say something, like “Let's get the heck out of here!"
Take a bear aware course before going into bear territory. Who knows - it may make you a smarter person and save a bear or two.

Dave Brewer

North Vancouver


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