5 bears trapped in Canmore, Alta. over the last week as backyard fruit draws them into town
It's been a busy start to October for bear conflict managers in Canmore as five bears have been relocated from the mountainous community in the past week alone.
In total, nine bears have been captured and moved afar from the townsite this year.
Jay Honeyman, a large carnivore conflict biologist with Alberta Environment and Parks who has been working with bears for more than three decades, says the primary attractant that draws them into town could be eliminated if residents removed fruit trees and secured their yards.
"In the past we've moved up to 19 bears on a couple of different occasions over a season," explained Honeyman. "While nine is not 19, nine is still too many but it is an average year.
"It's something that's been ongoing and it's something that needs to get fixed."
A black bear sow and her two cubs did not meet the same end as wildlife officers had to put down the trio that exhibited increasingly aggressive behavior while continuing to gain access to garbage and other food sources in town.
The odds are still stacked against the bears that are relocated to unfamiliar areas where they face the threat of other bears as well as hunters.
Honeyman encourages Canmore residents and visitors to town to carry bear spray and keep dogs on leash.
With files from CTV's Bill Macfarlane