A hungry grizzly bear can do a lot of damage in an orchard or vineyard.
And that has ultimately led conservation officers to snare, drug and relocate an errant grizzly right down in the valley at Okanagan Lake in Okanagan Centre over the weekend.
The decision to relocate the big bruin was made both for the safety of the public and the safety of the bear, said Conservation Officer Terry Myroniuk, who set a snare and baited in the animal with portions of a moose carcass in a vineyard.
He wouldn’t go into the culvert trap normally used to trap black bears that have been judged to be too aggressive and dangerous.
It’s very unusual to see a grizzly bear in the floor of the valley, although there are some who are resident up in the Big White area and at other remote locations around the valley.
Before the grizzly bear was transported, they equipped it with an ear tag so it can be identified and its movements checked on if it comes into contact with people again.
The bear was taken up Beaver Lake Road, “far enough that we hope he won’t return,” said the CO.
Myroniuk figures the grizzly is a three or four-year-old male.
The vineyard where it was caught was actually well-protected with a tall fence, but the grizzly dug underneath the fence to get in and feast on ripe fruit, Myroniuk reported.
One good sign in its behaviour was that it was not day-active, so it has retained its natural fear of humans.
There have also been recent sightings of a grizzly in the area of Gallagher’s Canyon, so Myroniuk wonders whether that one might have been a sibling and they chummed together and ended up moving down into the valley together looking for food.