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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Groups Ask People to Report Grizzly Bear Sightings

Hotline offered in BC, 1-855-GO-GRIZZ

“Every verified sighting contributes to our knowledge about SW BC’s grizzly bears which in turn helps us understand how vulnerable they are to local extinction,” said Joe Scott, Conservation Northwest. “Hikers, climbers, hunters, fishers, photographers, loggers and ranchers – anyone who is recreating or working in the mountains can potentially contribute. The more solid information biologists have about grizzly bear abundance and distribution the better their ability to monitor bear recovery.”

For more information, contact
Jul 24, 2012

Hope, British Columbia -  A collaboration of environmental groups has launched an effort to enlist public support in documenting sightings of rare grizzly bears in southern BC.

Volunteers from Hope Mountain Centre for Outdoor Learning, BC Nature and Conservation Northwest are distributing informational posters at retail outlets, trailheads, public buildings and other facilities. Sightings reports will be screened by trained volunteers and forwarded on to BC government biologists who will follow up with field verification.

“Grizzly bears are extremely rare in most of southern BC, particularly in the Cascades and the eastern slopes of the Coast Range,” said Scott Denkers of Hope Mountain Centre for Outdoor Learning. “We are asking the public to report sightings because every individual grizzly is important to these populations.”

The BC government lists grizzly bears in Cascades, Garibaldi/Pitt River, Stein/Nahatlatch Rivers and Squamish/Lillooet populations as “threatened.”  Government estimates that there are fewer than 35 grizzly bears on the east slopes of the BC Coast Range and the Cascades in the area stretching from Lillooet to I-90 in Washington.

Grizzly bears are slow to reproduce and slow to recover from low numbers. BC biologists and their counterparts from the US have worked together for years on grizzly bear science and recovery. The project groups hope to invest citizens in a similar vein through “citizen science” and monitoring.

“Grizzly bears are an important part of the outdoor experience for our members and a key species in BC’s wildlife legacy,” said Bev Ramey of BC Nature. “We’re happy to be able to play a role in a citizen’s science effort.”

“Every verified sighting contributes to our knowledge about SW BC’s grizzly bears which in turn helps us understand how vulnerable they are to local extinction,” said Joe Scott, Conservation Northwest. “Hikers, climbers, hunters, fishers, photographers, loggers and ranchers – anyone who is recreating or working in the mountains can potentially contribute. The more solid information biologists have about grizzly bear abundance and distribution the better their ability to monitor bear recovery.” 

The striking poster contains a sightings hotline (1-855-GO-GRIZZ or 1-855-464-7499), map of the area of interest, side-by-side comparison of grizzly bears and black bears, and website where people can find more detailed information. To request posters please contact Scott Denkers, Hope Mountain Centre, above.

For more information go to bearinfo.org/bc-bears

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