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Whistler bear management tools presented at world bear conference

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Whistler’s leading bear management program is not only attracting attention around B.C. and the rest of Canada, but south of the border as well.

Sylvia Dolson, the director of operations of the J.J. Whistler Bear Society, and Steve Searles, the pioneer of non-lethal wildlife management that Whistler’s bear management program is based on, will be making a presentation at the 13 th annual International Bear Association Conference in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, from June 21 to 25.

About 500 participants, including biologists and researchers from around the globe, are expected to attend the conference. Other topics include conservation and management, humans and bears, habitat management, population sampling, DNA/genetics, and physiology/evolution.

Whistler’s non-lethal bear management practices have resulted in a dramatic reduction in the number of bear kills in the valley. Prior to its introduction, up to 20 bears were destroyed each season. Last year conservation officers and the RCMP shot and killed just one bear, using non-lethal tools as an alternative.

The trip is being sponsored by the Humane Society of the United States.

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