Living in Bear Country

June 10, 2019

The black bears on our beautiful island are active from roughly April to November. This time of year, the bears are in Sooke looking for garbage and fruit trees.  Our fruit trees are ripe, and the streams are low this year. 

Please resist the urge to feed wildlife. It is against the Sooke bylaw to do so because this can encourage unnatural foraging behaviours, habituation to people, easily transmit diseases, cause malnutrition, and attract unwanted animals to your house/your neighbours. Sometimes this also reduces the natural fear of human ad large objects/animals. We live in a very rich environment with LOTS of natural food. Please help us spread the word about the potential negative side effects to feeding wildlife with someone you know. We encourage planting natural gardens instead- this will still allow you to view the animals but in a more natural way.

Communities where attractants are managed properly have seen a decline in related human- wildlife conflicts, and in the number of animals that must be destroyed. The most effective and natural way to reduce human-wildlife interaction is to properly manage food attractants such as garbage, and fruit trees, so they are not accessible to wildlife. A bear that finds an easy source of food at your house will quickly become a regular visitor!

Stay informed about bears in your area and check out Wild Wise Sooke at

Photo Source: CBC