A Coldstream resident got an unexpected visitor early Tuesday morning — one that didn’t mind posing for the camera.
Razia Sondhi captured video of a black bear who visited their property at 5:30 a.m. June 6. The bear appeared to be in no hurry to move along.
“I must say it was too early for visitors,” Sondhi said.
It’s not the first bear sighting in a Coldstream residential area of late. On June 1 a Coldstream woman reported seeing what she believed was the same bear twice in a three-day span at her property.
North Okanagan Conservation Officer Ken Owens said last month that it’s the time of year that bears are out and about looking for food, which means it’s time to check back yards for any attractants such as garbage, compost and bird feeders.
The Conservation Officer Service has tips for keeping people and bears safe and preventing property damage:
• Keep all garbage securely stored until collection day. Store attractants in a sturdy building or place in a certified bear-resistant garbage container. Use certified bear resistant garbage containers community wide. A complete list of certified products can be found here: IGBC Certified Bear-Resistant Products List.
• Bird feeders often become bear-feeders, so only feed birds during the winter months. Take feeders down between March and November. Keep ground free of seeds.
• If you compost in bear country, create your compost pile inside a bear resistant electric fence.
The public can report conflicts with dangerous wildlife, where there is a threat to public safety, to the Report All Poachers and Polluters (RAPP) hotline toll-free at 1 877 952-RAPP (7277) or visit the RAPP website at www.rapp.bc.ca.
Should you encounter a bear, remain calm. Don’t run or climb a tree. Slowly back away, talking to the bear in a quiet, monotone voice. Don’t scream, turn your back on the animal, kneel down or make direct eye contact.
Keep away from the bear, don’t move close to it. If the bear gets too close, use pepper spray (within seven metres) or something else to threaten or distract it.
If in a pair or group, stay together. If you’re with others, act as a group and keep children close. Small children should be picked up and carried.