The Coast to Cascades Grizzly Bear Initiative (CCGBI) is seeking support from Pemberton council to help protect B.C.'s grizzly bear population.
Presenting to Pemberton council on March 17, Johnny Mikes of the CCGBI noted that the Resort Municipality of Whistler and Lillooet have passed resolutions in support of grizzly bear recovery in the Sea to Sky region.
"We would request for Pemberton to please consider a resolution that would parallel (those)," Mikes said.
Of B.C.'s nine threatened grizzly bear populations, five are located in southwest B.C., Mikes said in his presentation.
The biggest threats to grizzly populations in the southwest of the province are the combined effects of human development and the resulting human-caused bear mortality, Mikes said.
While it's not legal to hunt threatened populations, humans are contributing to their decline in a number of ways from poaching to poorly managed food sources.
Grizzly bear recovery has been successful in other regions, such as the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem in the United States, where the population grew from 136 in 1975 to over 600 in 2012.
Ensuring grizzlies have a chance to recover involves reducing human-caused mortality, ensuring sufficient habitat with a range of food sources and providing safe linkages between bear populations so they are able to repopulate.
Mikes also noted that there is ample scientific information to inform grizzly bear management and recovery planning.
In his presentation, Mikes said Pemberton could help with recovery by supporting grizzly recovery goals and objectives in the Sea-to-Sky Land and Resource Management Plan, encouraging local governments and the province to support recovery and continuing to pursue the Bear Smart Initiative.
A resolution will be brought forward at a future meeting of Pemberton council.
For more information on the CCGBI and its recovery efforts visit www.coasttocascades.org.
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