Grizzly bear photographed on Vancouver Island north of Campbell River

An employee of a hatchery on northern Vancouver Island snapped a photo of a grizzly bear that appeared as if it had just swum across Johnstone Strait on Sept. 5.

“I work at the Little Bear Bay hatchery. When we left work at 4:30 p.m., we came across this bear 10 minutes down Rock Bay Road,” Jordan Markell told the Mirror. “We slowed down as we approached the bear and then stopped once we realized what it was. The bear moved to the side of the road but then continued to browse along the edge, keeping an eye on us.

“Once we started rolling forward to pass the bear. It began to jaunt down the road 20 metres or so until it reached the Pye East intersection. We stopped at the intersection to observe the bear some more as it began to slowly make its way from the road, up a hill side into the bush.”

It’s not unheard of for grizzly bears to come over to Vancouver Island. In fact, it may be part of an increasing trend.

“Our bear monitoring research on the central coast has revealed that grizzlies are colonizing many inner islands which were never before occupied, and are doing so with increased frequency over the last decade. We do not know why but it has coincided with salmon declines,” Chris Darimont, science director for Raincoast Conservation and the Hakai-Raincoast professor at the University of Victoria, told Black Press in 2016.

“We do not expect colonization on Vancouver Island, because human density is too high, especially along the eastern edge of the island where bears arrive and most humans live. People tend to panic and the poor bears do not last very long before they are killed,” said Darimont.

The first grizzly/human conflict on Vancouver Island more than 20 years ago, when one tried to get into a barn where there were a number of calves. It was destroyed by the farmer.

In 2005, a grizzly in a First Nations community was destroyed after it showed desensitized behaviour. Then, in mid-May 2006, another sub-adult male grizzly was climbing over a fence into a residential back yard in Sayward where grandchildren were playing. An individual grabbed a firearm and shot the animal.

RELATED: Grizzly sighted on Quadra

RELATED: GoFundMe page set up for victim of grizzly bear attack

 

Jordan Markell took this photo of a grizzly bear on Rock Bay Road northwest of Campbell River. Vancouver Island is traditionally known as not being grizzly bear habitat, although sightings of lone bears swimming across from the mainland occur occasionally and appear to be becoming more frequent. Photo by Jordan Markell

Just Posted

PHOTOS: More than 40 people gather for pro-choice rally

Event was planned to coincide with pro-abortion speaker Denise Mountenay presentation

Carihi Tyees win Island Championships

Senior girls volleyball team only lost two sets in the whole tournament

Campbell River RCMP look to identify four break-in suspects

Quinsam Communications had three separate break-ins Wednesday night, four suspects wanted

Stuck barge removed from Quadra, TSB on its way to investigate

‘Had it been loaded with railcars containing toxic chemicals … we may have had a serious issue’

Fish Are Food: A look at seafood sustainability

Conference at Maritime Heritage Centre to discuss food security from a marine perspective

Teen with cancer whose viral video urged Canadians to vote has died, uncle tweets

Maddison Yetman had been looking forward to voting in her first federal election since junior high school

Striking Vancouver hotel workers, employer reach ‘tentative’ agreement

Employees of the Rosewood Hotel Georgia have been out at picket lines since talks broke off on Sept. 21

Environmental and animal rights activists chain themselves to front doors of Kelowna bank

The group is protesting Interior Savings Credit Union’s support of Kelowna Ribfest

Cold, stormy winter forecast across much of Canada, The Weather Network predicts

In British Columbia temperatures will be slightly above normal and precipitation will be just below normal

Cell phone tickets worse tax grab than speed limits, SenseBC says

Distracted driving statistics questioned as B.C. tickets pile up

Comox Strathcona Waste Management looks at closing unstaffed depots

Amount of recycling material tainted seen as much bigger problem at these sites

Rowing Canada, UVic investigate celebrated coach for harassment, abuse

Lily Copeland says she felt intimidated and trapped by Williams

Cleanup in the works after tanker truck fire leads to oil spill in B.C.’s Peace region

The province said the majority of the spilled oil likely burned away in the fire.

Fisherman missing near Lake Cowichan’s Shaw Creek

Family is asking for everyone and anyone to keep their eyes open,… Continue reading

Most Read