On Tuesday, Lions Bay Bear Smart hosted a group of 17 individuals from small towns in Italy and Greece who came to learn about Bear Smart and how we do it in Lions Bay. We’re the only small town they’re visiting while in Canada: most of the group are themselves from small communities and strongly related to our journey.
They also spent time with the North Shore Black Bear Society and met with Squamish wildlife officers and Whistler Bear Aware during their week in Canada.
The group was made up of scientists, experts, National Park Managers, municipal officials (including one mayor), conservationists and activists, among others. Rewilding Apennines, one of several rewilding chapters in Europe, arranged the EU grant-funded trip. Their common goal is to establish a Bear Smart program to protect Marsican Brown Bears and manage human/bear conflicts, but they are also involved in a wide range of other conservation/rehabilitation projects.
They were also keen to hear about other conservation efforts in the Village. The Bird Friendly Initiative provided information on the Bird Friendly City program and you may have spotted the excited group walking down to the native plant garden and then up to the Centennial trail on Tuesday afternoon.
Many thanks to Val Morton and Frances Gordon for hosting them in the garden and John and Rose Dudley, Trudy Leuthy and Doug Craig for accompanying them to the Eagle View Loop. Thank you also to Marilyne Cary for the home baked cakes, crudite and ordering and collecting lunch, and to Frances for the smoked salmon canapes. The Café provided fresh coffee.