“No excuse” for killing of two young grizzly cubs

Reader hopeful someone will come forward with information

Dear Editor:

I have recently learned of the death of two young grizzly cubs and injury to their mother after they were hit by a vehicle on the road into the Thorsen Creek landfill. Apparently the cubs were deliberately hit multiple times until they died from their injuries.

There is no excuse for, much less understanding of such a cowardly, reprehensible act. After living for more than forty years in the Valley, I recognize how occasionally polarizing attitudes towards bears can be. But I trust that, whether you think bear populations need to be managed via a gun barrel or whether you support, as I always have, efforts to reduce attractants as a better way to ensure our safety and security, we can all agree to fully condemn the wanton disregard for young lives that in this case posed no threat to anyone.

Cubs die often, and though this incident is particularly horrifying, perhaps more important is that the mother was left in a state of significant injury to wander my neighbourhood posing a real threat to everyone in lower Bella Coola. Whoever drove over those cubs and their mother is in no way representative of the attitudes of the great majority of the people who live here.

In fact this is not about bears at all, but about people, about who we are. So I encourage anyone who has any knowledge of the circumstances surrounding the incident or the identity of the driver to contact the RCMP, the Conservation Officer or even me. Cowards will always turn their odious behaviour into a heroic event to brag about. If they are not held to account for their actions, maybe it will be your barking dog or howling cat that becomes their next target.

Sincerely,

Kevin O’Neill

Bella Coola

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