In their continuous efforts to minimize human conflicts with wildlife, WildSafeBC has made available free online safety courses on their website https://wildsafebc.com/
On the website, there are also numerous links to WildSafeBC’s other resources on topics such as wildlife behaviour and biology, factors that lead to conflict and solutions to help reduce conflict and increase safety.
There are four new self-paced online courses available on the site, recommended for anyone who works, lives, recreates and raises crops and livestock in B.C. They also plan on releasing more new courses in the future.
The current available courses include three regarding bear safety. The first is entitled “Bear Safety When Recreating, a 30-minute course geared towards anyone who spends times on the many trail networks across the province. This courses tackles what you should do to avoid negative encounters and what to do should you encounter a bear, including a review on the use of bear spray.
The next is called “Staying Safe in Bear Country,” a 25-minute video on understanding black and grizzly bear behaviour and how to respond appropriately if you find yourself in an encounter.
They also offer bear spray workshops to teach people how to effectively use it.
“Bear spray is only safe and effective if you become knowledgeable on how and when to use it, how to transport it safely, and have practiced removing it from the holster and discharging it,” WildSafe explained.
“A bear or other wildlife encounter can happen quickly, and you want to be able to pull the bear spray out of the holster, remove the safety, and discharge it in less than 2 seconds. To do this calmly and effectively will rely on muscle memory.”
WildSafeBC offers bear spray training workshops which allow participants to actually practice using bear spray that does not contain inert spray, its active ingredient which makes it effective against bears.
If interested, you can contact Community Coordinator Danica Roussy at email@example.com.
WildSafeBC is also offering Wildlife Awareness and Safety Course Level 1 Certification, a two to three hour comprehensive course tailored for anyone working out in wildlife country. The course is fee-based, but if you’d like to try the course out to see if fits your needs, you can try free samples of the first three modules.
Additionally, if your work requires you to have Wildlife Awareness and Safety Level 2 certification, you can combine this Level 1 course along with a bear spray training session. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more information on that.
You may also get in touch with Roussy if you wish to host a Wildlife Awareness and Safety Presentation or a Bear Spray Workshop in your community.