Whistler: Mama bear could get birth control | VailDaily.com

Whistler: Mama bear could get birth control

Allen Best
Vail, CO Colorado

WHISTLER, B.C. ” “Jeannie” is a familiar figure in Whistler. She had had nine cubs in five litters in years past, and often she’ll bring them to town for a meal or two.

And that is the problem, said bear enthusiasts in Whistler who are calling for Jeannie to be given administered a birth control chemical in a process called immunosterilization. The injection would prevent her from giving birth for five years ” and perhaps, free of having to feed little black bear mouths, she’ll cease her visits into Whistler. This would be the first time a wild bear has been so treated in Canada.

“I don’t think that the risk is that great (of the injection), and I think it may save her life in the long term,” said Sylvia Dolson, executive director of the Get Bear Smart Society of Whistler.

Last year, conservation officers in Whistler killed 13 so-called “conflict” bears, the highest death toll since the 1990s.

But bear expert Michael Allen, who named the bear after his Scottish grandmother, fiercely opposes the idea of bear birth control. He calls it a cop-out.

“We are not dealing with the root of the problem, garbage, and I am losing patience with the system,” Allen told Pique newsmagazine.

“She is showing us how she has changed throughout the years in response to us changing her environment, so to start changing her biology is almost criminal,” said Allen, who has studied bears for 23 years, 15 of them in Whistler.

Ken Melamed, the mayor of Whistler, said that government can only do so much. “We have a bear-proof collection system, but it is all of the activity that happens outside of the system that is a failure, and that really lands on the shoulders of personal behavior.”

CRESTED BUTTE, Colorado” With the snow now retreating as rapid a house cat that has caught sight of Doberman, the multitude sins of a long winter are now becoming apparent.

It’s not just the dog doo-doo, but in the case of some Colorado mountain towns, a great deal of damage from this winter’s unusually deep snow. In Crested Butte, windows and roofs have been damaged, as have benches and fences in the local parks.

So far, reports the Crested Butte News, there has not been new news of any old buildings collapsing, as is sometimes the case in big winters. “

It is known as demolition by neglect, which we frown on,” said Bob Gillie, the town’s building and zoning director.

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