The killing of the Newmarket black bear on Monday has thrust the issue of co-existence with wildlife into the media spotlight.
Every media outlet across Ontario has covered the topics of humane removal of wildlife, co-existence methods and government funding of such programs. Even the ultra-right-wing Toronto Sun highlighted the failures of the existing policies in an editorial cartoon.
Experts such as Mike McIntosh from Bear With Us Rehab and Sanctuary have been making the rounds as well, providing first-hand experience and analysis of behaviour to the masses. A new petition has started, calling for the government to formally review the policies and actions of the police and Ministry of Natural Resources in regards to wildlife conflict response.
We have long called for increased funding to conservation officers and appropriate training and related equipment for municipal police services to prevent this kind of tragedy from occurring. It is devastating that it took the needless slaughter of a frightened bear to get appropriate attention on this issue. Please sign the petition, write your MPP and contact your local council.
Together, we can find a way to live with wildlife.
Work like our growing Living With Wildlife campaign is only possible with the support of monthly donors. Please consider become a monthly donor – for as little as $5 a month – and help us create a Canada that is truly fur-free.