Keep an eye out for moose and bears says ministry

Staff ~ The Southwest Booster
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The Saskatchewan Ministry of Environment says the moose population is increasing in Southern Saskatchewan, which has lead to more incidents with humans.

According to a media release issued by the ministry, many of the moose that wander into communities and farmyards are yearlings that have just started living apart from their mother.

The incidents are most common in the spring, but can continue throughout the year.  Even cities like Saskatoon and Regina have found moose wandering through the streets.

Although the young moose do sometimes find their way out of the town they’ve wandered into, some like to stay put.  The ministry advises residents that in that in such cases, residents should avoid startling the creature, and call conservation officers who will tranquilize the animal and move it back into the wild.

The ministry also emphasizes the importance of keeping the animals calm.  It’s difficult to tranquilize a startled moose because of all the adrenaline running through its body.

Despite the increase in numbers in the south, the moose population was listed across the province as stable to slightly down in 2013.

The ministry also advises campers heading up north to be aware of the bear population.  Bears are attracted to areas where they think they can find food, and campsites often provide an easy feast.

In order to keep the animals away, the ministry suggests keeping your campsite clear of garbage, storing all food in your car, and to avoid cooking and eating in your tent.  If you have fish, do not clean it at your campsite.

Campers should also pitch their tent in open clearings away from brush and streams.

Hikers are advised to talk or whistle when walking so as to notify bears of your presence, and above all, don’t feed them.  Bears who are fed by humans often lose their natural wariness.  They become less shy about foraging for food in campsites, which sometimes leads to the bear being put down.

Organizations: Saskatchewan Ministry of Environment

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