A Kodiak bear is fed ice cream in a Dairy Queen drive-thru in a screengrab from a video posted to Facebook by the Discovery Wildlife Park. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Facebook-Discovery Wildlife Park

Province charges Alberta zoo after ice-cream-eating bear video

Alberta laid two charges under its Wildlife Act against a central Alberta zoo after a bear was taken through a drive-thru for ice cream.

The province has laid two charges under its Wildlife Act against a central Alberta zoo after a bear was taken through a drive-thru for ice cream.

A video, posted on social media in January by Discovery Wildlife Park in Innisfail, showed a one-year-old captive Kodiak bear named Berkley leaning out a truck’s window and being hand-fed ice cream by the owner of the local Dairy Queen.

Bear experts called it irresponsible and disrespectful — although a zoo trainer defended it as educational and done on “purpose for a purpose.”

Officials with the province began investigating the video and the terms of the zoo’s permit.

Wildlife officers allege the zoo failed to notify the province prior to the bear leaving the park.

Related: Giant panda family makes its Calgary Zoo debut

Related: Queen emerges as baboon battle ends at Toronto Zoo after hormone intervention

Discovery Wildlife Park and its owners, Doug Bos and Debbie Rowland, are to appear in Red Deer provincial court on May 28.

“Under the terms and conditions of the zoo’s permit, the charges are directly related to the alleged failure of the park to notify the provincial government prior to the bear leaving the zoo,” said a statement from the province late Monday.

One count is related to the bear being taken through the drive-thru for ice cream, while the other pertains to the bear leaving the facility on other occasions in 2017.

The charges were laid under Section 12(3) of the Wildlife Act, which states a person must not contravene the terms or conditions of a licence or permit.

The zoo’s permit, which is regulated by Alberta Environment and Parks, has been revised to impose new conditions.

Those include requiring the zoo to provide more details when asking to transport a controlled animal or wildlife and to keep those animals in a cage, crate or kennel when in a vehicle.

It also says the zoo cannot put any animals on display outside the facility without prior permission from the province nor can it allow any member of the public to have physical contact with animals such as monkeys, cougars, wolves or bears.

Related: Cougar kitten gets new lease on life at Greater Vancouver Zoo

Related: Revelstoke Petting Zoo owner charged with 24 counts of animal cruelty

The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

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

Comments are closed

Just Posted

RCMP seek man facing sexual assault charges

Police believe he may be living on central Vancouver Island but also has a history in the Cariboo region

Campbell River restaurant to be converted into housing for people experiencing homelessness

BC Housing buys popular eatery for $985,000 to serve as bridge housing

NIC launches virtual orientation sessions

New students encouraged to take part in virtual sessions, webinars, video tours starting this summer

Patron of the Arts hosts hat-building contest in Campbell River

Group is looking for hats made from recycled or upcycled materials and will display them downtown

UPDATE: More details released on search for missing Vancouver Island hiker

Searchers scouring Strathcona Park near Gold River for experienced 65-year-old on 40-kilometre trek

Horrifying video shows near head-on collision on Trans Canada

The video was captured on dash cam along Highway 1

Elizabeth May endorses Furstenau in BC Greens race

Former federal party leader backs Cowichan Valley MLA

Mirror business directory and map

If you’d like to be added to the list, shoot us an email

Fraser Valley woman complains of violent RCMP takedown during wellness check

Mounties respond that she was not co-operating during Mental Health Act apprehension

B.C. sees 12 new COVID-19 cases, no new deaths

Three outbreaks exist in health-care settings

Lost dog swims Columbia River multiple times searching for home

The dog was missing from his Castlegar home for three days.

COVID-19: B.C. promotes video-activated services card

Mobile app allows easier video identity verification

ICBC to resume road tests in July with priority for rebookings, health-care workers

Tests have been on hold for four months due to COVID-19

Would you take a COVID-19 vaccine? Poll suggests most Canadians say yes

75 per cent of Canadians would agree to take a novel coronavirus vaccine

Most Read