There have been multiple cougar and bear sightings in Surrey this year. Anyone who sees one should call the Conservation Officer Service or the 24-hour hotline at 1-877-952-RAPP (7277).

42 cougar and 5 bear sightings so far in Surrey this year

Public urged to take precautions to prevent wild animal encounters.

So far this year, there have been multiple reports of bear and cougar sightings in Surrey.

Because most encounters take place mid-summer to mid-fall, Surrey RCMP are warning residents to watch out for the potentially dangerous wildlife and take precautions to reduce the likelihood of run-ins.

In the first six months of this year, police say conservation officers have received calls about five bear sightings and 42 cougar sightings in Surrey.

In comparison, for all of 2014, there were 21 bear reports and 19 cougar sightings. In 2013, the figures were particularly high, with 254 bear and 76 cougar sightings.

However, officials note the number of sightings can be misleading.

“The conservation officer described it to me this way… he said ‘that may sound like a lot, but it can be just two animals, for example, generating all those calls in a short period of time’,” explained Cpl. Scotty Schumann. “So if you have a bear or cougar that’s not afraid to be in the neighbourhood and hangs around for awhile, you’re going to get big numbers. The numbers don’t say how many animals in the area.”

He said conservation officers indicated the cougar sightings are more common in the South Surrey area.

While most wild animals shy away from human contact, the lure of garbage sometimes trumps their fear.

Surrey police officers work with conservation officers to ensure both the safety of the public and the animals. To prevent attracting a bear of cougar to your neighbourhood, take the following steps:

• Keep garbage inside until pickup day;

• Don’t add meat products or cooked food to compost and keep it covered;

• Pick ripe and fallen fruit daily or remove unused fruit trees;

• Use bird feeders only in winter and keep ground free of seeds;

• Clean barbecue grill after each use and store covered in a secure place;

• Keep pet dishes and food indoors.

If you see a bear or cougar, you’re advised to remain calm and stay away from the animal and bring children and pets inside.

Call the Conservation Officer Service or the 24-hour hotline at 1-877-952-RAPP (7277) and do not attempt to deal with the animal yourself. If a life is in danger, call 911.

For more information on your local Conservation Officer Service and reporting human wildlife conflicts, visit the Ministry Of Environment website.

 

Just Posted

Woman found dead in Okanagan Lake identified as Surrey resident

Police ‘do not believe criminality was involved’ in the death of 29-year-old Caitlin Bradley

‘I feel ready for it’: On a BMX, Surrey man is ‘Cycling for Sobriety’ across Canada

Mat Fee will depart Halifax on May 1 to raise money and awareness for John Volken Academy

Students run blood, stem cell donor drive at Surrey’s Vaisakhi Parade

Volunteer youth group One Blood for Life aims to create a more ethnically diverse stem cell registry

Surrey prayer vigil planned to honour hundreds killed in Sri Lanka bombings

The event is set for 6:30 p.m. Monday night at Holland Park

Homeless activists outside Notre Dame demand ‘a roof too’

Wealthy people have donated millions to effort to rebuild cathedral after devastating fire

B.C. VIEWS: NDP’s lawyer show is turning into a horror movie

Court actions pile up over pipelines, car insurance, care aides

Anti-SOGI activist slams ban on B.C. dad speaking out about transgender son’s case

A judge has told the father to stop publicly objecting to his son’s gender

PHOTOS: Green Party Leader Elizabeth May says ‘I do’ on Earth Day

May and John Kidder got married Monday morning in Victoria

Victims injured in Lower Mainland deck collapse ranged from 15 to 83 years old

Victim Services staff have reached out to those hurt and their families

‘Ghost restaurants’ cooked up by Joseph Richard Group to meet demand of delivered food

The new Meal Ticket Brands venture aims to ‘disrupt’ the local restaurant industry

Sri Lanka invokes war-time military powers after nearly 300 killed in Easter bombings

Sri Lanka’s minister of tourism says 39 foreign tourists were killed in the Easter Sunday attacks

Torched SUV linked to Vancouver’s fourth homicide

Manoj Kumar, 30, was found dead from gunshot wounds in the Kitsilano neighbourhood

Multiple sailing waits as BC Ferries deals with Easter Monday traffic

89 extra sailings had been added to the long weekend schedule

Most Read