A Vancouver liquor store got an unlikely guest wandering through its doors earlier this week, a black bear.
An adult black bear made its way into Last Call Liquor Store in Revelstoke on Monday evening. The owner of the liquor store, Claudio Brunetti, says, “he’s called ‘the spirit bear’ because he wandered down the spirits section of the store.”
A customer from Italy was also in the store at the time. Brunetti says, “He was shocked and in disbelief. He’d never seen a bear before.”
Thankfully, one of the men knew how to handle the situation. Brunetti has been living in the area for his whole life. He began yelling at the bear loudly to get its attention. The bear turned around and strolled out of the store.
Brunetti says that while he does see bears walking the road outside his store from time to time, none have ever stopped to get a drink.
A local group, however, is hoping to change the narrative about conflicts between bears and humans. Revelstoke Bear Aware is a program that hopes to reduce human and bear clashes. They do this through education and active management leadership for Revelstoke and surrounding areas.
Maggie Spizzirri, the coordinator of Revelstoke Bear Aware, says that this bear may have been the one responsible for breaking into a truck earlier Monday and walking downtown on Wednesday.
Spizzirri says, “the concerning thing is having a bear that is habituated. That’s when we can get into human-wildlife conflict.”
In the area, conservation officials have set up traps for the black bear and have asked people to keep their trash sealed.
Why are We Seeing So Many Bears?
The high number of bears in this and other areas could be due to the lack of natural food sources such as fish and berries. Another possibility is because humans have been spending more time indoors this year due to the coronavirus, and tourism is down.
[H/T CTV News]