The Conservation Officer Service says the deceased Black Bear found in the North Nechako area earlier this week suffered a horrible death.
After responding to the report of the dead bear, officers found a tiny .22 calibre pellet found in the animal’s lung.
“While we don’t have the exact cause of death, I’m pretty confident that that would’ve been at least one of the underlying factors and it would’ve probably been a very horrible death having that in your lung,” said Eamon McArthur with the Conservation Officer Service.
McArthur says they have no idea just how long the animal suffered before passing away.
Officers believe the pellet gun was likely used as a scare tactic to get the animal to leave the premises, however, it ended up having devastating results.
“This situation makes me kind of sick that this happened, and it could’ve been easily avoided by just reporting it and providing us with information,” he said.
This tactic does violate the Wildlife Act, and McArthur says the best way to get a wild animal to leave is to contact the Report All Poachers and Polluters (RAPP) line.
“I understand some people believe using pellet guns is an acceptable way to try and scare animals away from their house, that being said this proves that this is just not the case, it’s not a good option because you don’t know what’s going to happen, ” McArthur stated.
According to McArthur, the service has dealt with hundreds of bear sightings over the past few weeks.
“We’ve been trying to triage calls as best we can with the number of officers we have available and some of them we just can’t get to because they don’t warrant action.”
He adds the best way to reduce human-bear conflict is to get rid of any natural food sources in the area such as berries and apples.
We received over 200 human-wildlife conflict calls across B.C. yesterday. So far today, 62 & counting. Many relate to bears & attractants – sniffing around BBQs, getting into garbage, breaking into outdoor freezers, foraging on fallen fruit & hanging around residential areas…
— BC CO Service (@_BCCOS) September 24, 2021