Black bear strolls into Vernon house

Conservation officers are searching for the bear, which entered a home in the Foothills area

Aaron Davis caught this bear on security camera roaming around his Foothills home, on Phoenix Drive, at 11:30 a.m. Tuesday, June 9. (Surveillance footage)

A Vernon resident had a close encounter with a bear Thursday afternoon — in his own living room.

Conservation Officer Micah Kneller said the man, who lives in the Foothills area along Silver Star Road, had left open the front door of his house during the afternoon heat June 4 when a bear strolled inside.

Upon seeing the bear, the homeowner made noise, and the bear turned around and left.

Kneller said the bear was tracked for a few weeks and had become habituated to eating garbage in the neighbourhood.

A live trap in the area has been established and upon capture, conservation officers said it will have to be destroyed.

“This is exactly what we want to prevent happening,” Kneller said.

Bears that have acquired the habit of eating human garbage cannot unlearn this food source.

It is an offence under the BC Wildlife Act to leave or place an attractant that can or may attract dangerous wildlife to a land or premises, meaning garbage can’t be left in a place where wildlife can get to it.

Instead, garbage should be secured inside a building or locked metal container until the morning of curbside pickup.

“It’s sort of frustrating for this family because their garbage and everything was stored properly in a location that bears can’t get to it, and the bear walked into their house,” Kneller said. “The problem is the people who aren’t.”

Kneller said bears start by coming around people at night to look for food.

If they find a food source near people they’ll start coming more and more, and eventually start coming during the day, when they run into people and dogs.

“And then slowly their behaviour escalates to where we’re at now, where the bear is so comfortable with people and so food-conditioned to know that it can find food around people that it feels comfortable enough to walk into someone’s house.”

To report an incident of human-wildlife interaction where public safety may be at risk, call the RAPP line at 1-877-952-7277.

READ MORE: Bear snacks on bird feeder near Enderby

READ MORE: Wolf put down following unprovoked attack on senior near Prince Rupert


Brendan Shykora
Reporter, Vernon Morning Star
Email me at Brendan.Shykora@vernonmorningstar.com
Follow us: Facebook | Twitter

ConservationWildlife

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

Just Posted

Windows broken, racist graffiti left on Summerland home

Family says nothing like this has happened since they moved to Summerland in 1980s

Oliver cherry farm allowed to continue operating following positive COVID-19 cases

Interior Health not concerned about health risk to individuals consuming products from farm

Morning Start: Big Bertha is the oldest cow to ever live

Your morning start for Tuesday, July 14, 2020

Two positive COVID-19 cases at Oliver farm

The risk of exposure to the general public related to this farm is considered to be low

Oliver Town Hall closed to public as staffer shows COVID-19 symptoms

One staff member at Oliver Town Hall is being tested for coronavirus

Sources say Canada, U.S. likely to extend mutual travel ban into late August

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau hinted at the possibility after a phone call with U.S. President

‘We know people are going to come to Kelowna’: Mayor addresses COVID-19 cluster

The mayor said people need to continue following the advice of the medical health officer, Dr. Bonnie Henry

City of Kelowna to hold funds for 2023 Memorial Cup bid

$135,000 of the city’s initial $225,000 commitment to the tournament will be held for a future bid

Vernon Search and Rescue aids injured Okanagan Rail Trail cyclist

Group’s Utility Terrain Vehicle proving to be a valuable asset on the popular trail

Hitchhiker with metal pipe prompts RCMP to close of Highway 1 near Salmon Arm

Police respond to report of man who pointed what was believed to be a rifle at passing driver

Canadians torn on scaling back COVID-19 benefits to save money: poll

Of those surveyed, 78 per cent said they were worried about the size of the deficit

Summerland approves solar project

Despite community opposition, council voted 4-3 for Cartwright Mountain location

Police search for suspect in assault on woman in downtown Kelowna

Kelowna police received a report a woman had been assaulted by an unknown man on July 12

‘Trauma equals addiction’: Why some seek solace in illicit drugs

Part 2: Many pushed into addiction by ‘toxic stress,’ says White Rock psychologist

Most Read