Motion detection wildlife cameras caught this image of a wolf at The Pacific Rim National Park Reserve’s Willowbrae-Halfmoon Bay Trail. (Photo - Pacific Rim National Park Reserve)

Wolf sightings in Ucluelet spark warnings to keep pets safe

“It’s always best practice and safe practice to keep your pets on leashes.”

Pet owners are being urged to keep their dogs and cats secured after a wolf was spotted in Ucluelet last week.

Andrew Riddell of the Conservation Officer Service said the COS has received reports of wolf sightings and is monitoring the situation, but does not believe the animal is a threat to public safety.

“I haven’t gotten any information that would cause any kind of concern for the residents in Ucluelet,” he told the Westerly News, adding the COS has “zero intention” of euthanizing or relocating the wolf based on its reported behaviour so far.

He added, though, that pets should not be left outdoors unattended.

“It’s always best practice and safe practice to keep your pets on leashes,” he said.

Carla Anderson of Ocean Pet Supplies told the Westerly that pet owners must be extra vigilant when wolf activity is being reported.

“If there’s a wolf sighting in town like this, I don’t let my cat out. She’s inside 24/7, much to her disgust…She can suck it up and just stay inside,” Anderson said.

“Keep your dog on a leash when you’re in conspicuous areas like trails and things like that. Check behind you when you’re walking and just be aware of your surroundings. Don’t let them [dogs or cats] free-roam.”

Riddell said anyone who spots a wolf in the community should immediately report their sighting to the COS at 1-877-952-7277. He said many residents are posting about their wolf sightings on Facebook, but aren’t taking the important step of calling conservation officers as well.

“People do talk on social media and that’s great that they’re warning each other, but it would also be nice if, at the same time, they took a little bit of time just to give us a call and make that report so we can track the wolf,” he said.

“A lot of work is going on into researching wolf activity and behaviour on the West Coast. We want to know if they’re coming further into town or more frequently into town or if they’re having more interactions with people on trails and on beaches.”

Anderson said that if the COS does not receive reports of a wolf in time, they might not be able to haze the animal out before it becomes habituated and comfortable enough around humans to pose a threat.

“The importance of reporting sightings and encounters to the COS is so that when the animal makes that switch from a sighting, which is normal behaviour, to an encounter, which is the start of habituation, the conservation officers can step in and haze that animal and keep it safe,” she said. “My motto is: ‘Haze them to save them.’”

READ MORE: VIDEO: Tofino wolf sighting awes AdventureSmart coordinator

READ MORE: Conservation Officer says wolves that attacked dog in Tofino will not be killed

READ MORE: Wolf killed in Pacific Rim National Park Reserve between Tofino and Ucluelet



andrew.bailey@westerlynews.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

End of an Era: Tofino hair studio closes shop

“We were getting excited to start ramping up and then all of sudden we had to close our doors.”

Vancouver Island’s current COVID-19 case count officially hits zero

Of the 130 recorded Island Health cases, five people have died, 125 recovered

Alberni Valley, West Coast First Nations gather to remember woman fatally shot by police

Nuu-chah-nulth Tribal Council requests an independent investigation

Tla-o-qui-aht First Nation woman, 26, fatally shot by police in Edmundston, N.B.

Police were conducting a well-being check at the time of the incident

Ucluelet’s Wild Pacific Trail ventures online to inspire self-isolators

“Because of COVID-19, we could not do in-person naturalist programs.”

‘I’m pissed, I’m outraged’: Federal minister calls out police violence against Indigenous people

Indigenous Minister Marc Miller spoke on recent incidents, including fatal shooting of a B.C. woman

‘Alarmed:’ Health critic calls for more data on COVID-19 in trucking industry

Saskatchewan, Ontario and Quebec said that level of detail is not being collected

UPDATED: Pair accused of ‘horrific’ assault at Vancouver’s Oppenheimer Park arrested

Police say Jason Tapp, 30, and Nicole Edwards, 33, did not show up to meet their bail supervisor this week

Kelowna Mountie who punched suspect identified, condemned by sister

‘How did he get away with this? How is this justifiable?’

PHOTOS: Anti-racism protesters gather in communities across B.C.

More protests are expected through the weekend

No charges to be laid against 22 northern B.C. pipeline protesters

Twenty-two people were arrested in February, but Crown has decided not to pursue charges

Plan in place for BC Ferries to start increasing service levels

Ferry corporation reaches temporary service level agreement with province

B.C. starts to see employment return under COVID-19 rules

Jobless rate for young people still over 20% in May

Most Read