Conservation officer in court after euthanizing bear cub

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A non-profit is taking the BC Conservation Officer Service to court, alleging that a conservation officer illegally killed a black bear cub near Dawson Creek last year.

On May 6th, 2016, a woman found an abandoned bear cub lying on a gravel road near her home about 50 kilometres from Dawson Creek. The woman called RCMP, and they routed her call to a conservation officer. In the meantime, the woman and her brother reportedly brought the cub home and gave it food and water while they waited for the officer to arrive. When the woman told the officer what they’d done, the officer reportedly said that the cub would have to be put down. The woman then arranged for the bear to be accepted by the Northern Lights Wildlife Society in Smithers, but when the officer arrived, he euthanized the bear by injection.

Wildlife organization The Fur-Bearers say they will argue in a Vancouver courtroom today that Conservation Officer Micah Kneller was in violation of the Wildlife Act when he euthanized the bear, because the act permits officers to euthanize animals that are likely to harm persons, property, or other wildlife. The province will argue that there are no legal limits on Conservation Officers to euthanize bear cubs.

Stock photo.
Photo credit: USFWS/Orsulak https://www.flickr.com/photos/usfwssoutheast/16389571734

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