The City of Port Alberni has closed Blair Park and a portion of the Kitsuksis Dyke walking path after three bears have been spotted in the area. (CITY OF PORT ALBERNI PHOTO)

Port Alberni park closed due to bear sightings

Bears may have become food-conditioned by park garbage cans

A park in Port Alberni will remain closed to the public for at least a week after three bears were spotted in the area.

The City of Port Alberni announced on Tuesday, Oct. 6 that Blair Park (located at the end of Pineo Road and Margaret Street) and a portion of the Kitsuksis Dyke walking path are currently closed to the public, as three bears have been spotted in the area and have been getting into the city’s garbage cans.

The city and Conservation Officer Services are hoping to avoid trapping the animals.

“We think they have become food-conditioned,” explained Gaylene Thorogood, the city’s manager of public safety. “We’re closing the park out of an abundance of caution. We’re trying to avoid any human-bear conflicts and hoping they will move on to another location.”

The garbage cans will be removed and upgraded over the next week, she said.

Bear sightings and encounters with aggressive bears can be reported to Conservation Officer Services at 1-877-952-7277.

“Seeing a bear in general is not a conflict, but if they’re in our parks and not being scared off, we don’t want that to happen,” said Thorogood.

The park and walking path will re-open on Oct. 13 at 8 a.m.



elena.rardon@albernivalleynews.com

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