Finding: Moving Day for Bears

Hollywood has its comedies. Scandinavia does dark thrillers. British dramas are legendary. And Yukon … will recognition come to the  Canadian territory for wildlife documentaries as authentic as the far north?

This month Yukon conservation officers captured a black bear and her cubs eating garbage left out by residents in Whitehorse, Yukon’s capital. Garbage bears are soon dead bears in Canada; when the animals lose their fear of humans they’re routinely shot before they  endanger people or pets.

In My Bear, poet Robert W. Service advocated scaring away a Yukon bear by feeding it a concoction of mustard, tobasco sauce, ginger and cayenne pepper. Government workers either didn’t get that memo — or found it more entertaining to truck the bears to a remote area, then make a video. “Relocation isn’t an ideal situation because there’s no guarantee they’ll adapt to their new habitat, but it was the best option here,” said Environment Yukon in a statement released with the footage. 

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