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District asks Garibaldi Highlands for increased bear care

Following removal of sow and two cubs, District asks neighbourhood for extra caution.
A sow and two cubs (not pictured) were relocated from Garibaldi Highlands by conservation officers on June 1.

The District of Squamish is asking residents in the Garibaldi Highlands area to be extra vigilant with their bear attractants.

On Friday, June 2, the District sent out a wildlife alert that read, in part, “Residents in the Garibaldi Highlands are urged to be extra vigilant in securing wildlife attractants, particularly garbage and organics totes, birdfeeders and dog food, to protect the well being of a sow and her cubs who were relocated by the Conservation Officer Service from the Garibaldi Highlands neighbourhood on Thursday, June 1.”

A spokesperson for the Conservation Officer Service confirmed a sow and two cubs were recently relocated from the neighbourhood.

“When bears become garbage-conditioned and human habituated their chances of survival decrease significantly, and it’s up to us as a community to ensure there is no access to non-natural food should these bears return, or others fill their place,” the alert continued. 

“Once a bear has become food-conditioned and human habituated, there are limited options for its management. Please do your part to prevent this tragic outcome from happening.”

Tips offered in the alert include:

  • Storing totes inside a garage or shed
  • Anchoring totes if outdoors
  • Freeze food scraps, then empty on collection day
  • Keep totes locked until collection day
  • Place totes curbside on the day of collection rather than the night before
  • Rinse recycling
  • Clean barbecues after use
  • Keep pet food indoors
  • Make bird feeders inaccessible to bears
  • Keep your grass cut, free of dandelions and avoid seeding with clover

Lastly, if your tote is broken, GFL can replace it at no charge by calling 604.892.5604 or emailing

The public can report wildlife sightings or encounters to the Conservation Officer Service at 1-877-952-7277 (RAPP).

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