Whistler resident fined $60,000 for feeding bears

The B.C. Conservation Officer Service describes it as a precedent-setting case

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      A woman has been ordered to pay a heavy penalty for putting out food for bears.

      In North Vancouver Provincial Court, a judge imposed a $60,000 fine on Whistler resident Zuzana Stevikova.

      It came after she had been deliberately feeding bears in Whistler for an extended period of time.

      This habituated the bears to human beings, according to the B.C. Conservation Officer Service. As a result, officers felt they had no choice but to kill three of these animals that were regularly visiting and posing a threat to residents.

      "The investigation found that Stevikova had been intentionally feeding black bears throughout the summer of 2018," the B.C. Conservation Officer Service stated on its Facebook page. "Bulk produce—including up to 10 cases of apples, 50 pounds of carrots and up to 15 dozen eggs—was purchased on a weekly basis to feed the bears."

      A majority of the penalty went to the Habitat Conservation Trust Foundation, the Facebook page stated. It's the largest fine ever imposed under the provincial Wildlife Act.