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Fewer problem bear calls reported in B.C.

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While it seems like there’s been no shortage of bear encounters this year, WildSafeBC is reporting something different.

According to the group, there’s been 24 percent fewer problem bear calls in the province than there was at this time last year.

Kamloops and North Vancouver have had even less. Conservation officers in these areas reported about half the calls they’ve had in previous years. The only region in the province that saw a spike in bear calls was Prince George.

But fewer calls isn’t only good news for B.C. officials and residents—it’s good news for the bears, too. According to a report by the CBC, conservation officers in the province have also shot 30 percent fewer bears this year.

So what’s different about this year?

“First of all it was a really good spring so there was a lot of natural forage for the bears,” WildSafe provincial coordinator Frank Ritzey told the CBC. “Secondly a lot of people are beginning to understand managing the garbage correctly and reducing the number of bears that stay in a neighbourhood.”

Despite the good news, that doesn’t mean people should let their guard down or stop practicing good habits. To ensure you’re doing everything you can to avoid encounters with problem bears, read “How to deal with bears.”