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Unsettling video shows person sitting beside Whistler bear eating takeout

The video shows a dangerously close human-bear interaction.

Social media videos circulating of people interacting closely with black bears in Whistler is concerning residents. 

Two videos have been shared on TikTok and caught the eye of one resident who voiced her concern. 

One video has since been deleted but was posted on TikTok on Oct. 4 and shows a black bear eating out of a takeout container at what appears to be a Whistler bus stop. 

The video is captioned bear encounter and says "when you don’t take attention [to] surroundings until [it] is too late.”

In the video, the person can be seen sitting on the same bench right beside the bear and filming. After 15 seconds, the individual stands up and continues filming the bear. The entire video lasts under 30 seconds.

Another video by a different individual was shared on TikTok on Oct. 12, and shows a man following a black bear in Whistler village.

“The bear was huge so obviously I followed it,” reads the caption on the video. 

A woman shared the two videos to a local Facebook group, concerned about the behaviour of the individuals who took the video. She posted them to Whistler Summer 2023 saying the two people should know better than to be harassing and feeding the wildlife. 

Glacier Media asked RCMP and the Conservation Officer Service (COS) for comment on the videos and if they are investigating but did not receive a response by publication time.

Black bear deaths in Whistler

Four black bears have been killed due to human conflict in Whistler this year. 

In April, conservation officers shot and killed an elderly, emaciated black bear near the day lots. 

Conservation officers killed a young black bear on July 15 after it accessed several Whistler homes. 

On Sept. 13, an adolescent black bear was killed after it was approaching people for food on several occasions. In a wildlife notice on behalf of the Conservation Officer Service, the Resort Municipality of Whistler (RMOW) said the "sub-adult black bear" posed an elevated risk to public safety despite two relocations and repeated attempts to haze the animal throughout two months.

"This is a very sad situation and an important reminder to residents that according to Whistler’s solid waste bylaw it is the law to secure all wildlife attractants, this includes food," the RMOW explained. 

A black bear that was found eating garbage inside an Alpine Meadows home on Sept. 30 was killed by conservation officers

Any food left unsecured outside is classified as a wildlife attractant, according to the bylaw. 

"Early reporting allows officers to use non-lethal hazing methods to shepherd bears away," the municipality stated in the notice. 

Residents are reminded to secure all bear attractants and report bear encounters by calling COS: 1-877-952-7277.