A young bear caught in downtown Coquitlam last May returned to the city after being relocated, according to information provided by B.C. Conservation Officer Service.
The bear cub had been spotted walking alone last spring when conservation officers sent word the bruin was: “heading right to the police station,” according to documents recently released through a freedom of information request.
After RCMP officers were unable to spot the bear, conservation officers drove around until they found the cub near an abandoned fenced-in lot in downtown Coquitlam on the afternoon of May 3.
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The conservation officers tried to tranquilize the cub by firing a 2-cc dart filled with an undisclosed substance. Despite landing in the bear’s right thigh, the cub was still looking around, according to documents released by the Ministry of Environment and Climate Change Strategy.
After waiting half an hour for the drug to take effect, a conservation officer fired a 1.5-cc dart into the bear’s neck muscle.
The bear was about two years old and likely not orphaned but rather separated from its mother, according to the conclusions of the conservation officers.
The bear was subsequently tagged, loaded into a trap and trucked outside the city for a “short-distance relocation.”
An ear-tagged bear was reported in the same area of Coquitlam several days later, according to B.C. COS.
Conservation officers killed 77 juvenile bears in 2021, including two in the Tri-Cities.
Residents can report aggressive bear behaviour at 1-877-952-7277.
Related: ‘Life and death decisions’ Animal rights organization calls for measures to protect young bears