Dear City of Fernie Resident,
I would like to take this opportunity to thank Fernie residents who are “Bear Aware” and making changes in their daily routines by putting their garbage on the curb the morning of collection, cleaning up their fruit trees, bringing in their birdfeeders and bear proofing their property.
However, there are still a number of residents who are attracting bears to our neighbourhoods as a result of neglect, intent or irresponsible management of bear attractants (garbage, fruit trees and bird feeders). The time has come for the Bear Aware Educational Program, promoting responsible management of attractants, to be combined with power of enforcement in order to reduce the potential for bear/human conflict and ensure that our community remains safe and our bears stay wild.
On October 9, 2007, the City of Fernie adopted amendments to Waste Regulation Bylaw #1845 restricting the availability of wildlife attractants and is now in effect. Failure to manage wildlife attractants responsibly will result in the imposition of a penalty.
Bylaw 1845 now states:
➢ It is unlawful to place your garbage on the curb prior to 5 am on the day of collection.
➢ It is unlawful to accumulate, place or store wildlife attractants (garbage, food products, food waste and other accessible, edible products or waste that attracts wildlife) under your carport, on your deck, in your backyard or in such a manner as to promote an increase in bear activity, thereby creating a risk to the safety of the public in the neighbourhood or vicinity. Please dispose of excess waste responsibly, take it to the transfer station.
➢ Commercial waste dumpsters containing wildlife attractants must be kept closed during the day and secured at the end of each business day to prevent access by wildlife. Businesses or individuals responsible for commercial waste containers have until March 31, 2008 to replace or modify them in order to comply.
If you have any questions or would like help managing attractants to wildlife please contact Bear Aware, 423-6406. For information regarding Bylaw #1845 please contact the City of Fernie, 423-6817.
We have chosen to live in Bear Country. With this choice comes a responsibility to ensure peaceful coexistence. By managing attractants to bears and complying with this bylaw, everyone will benefit, including the bears.
Yours in Conservation
Kathy Murray
Bear Aware Program Delivery Specialist

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