News Local

Four bears tranquilized in Coquitlam

By Richard Zussman, QMI Agency Vancouver

Conservation officers tranquilized a mother bear and three cubs early Wednesday morning after they were found digging for garbage in a Coquitlam school dumpster.

"In our school district we see this fairly often; bears are not strangers to school grounds in our area," said Coquitlam school board spokesperson Cheryl Quinton. "We have various measures in place."

Police were called just before 2:30 a.m. Wednesday after neighbours complained about noises coming from Summit Middle School. Conservation officers discovered the mother bear and one cub perched in a tree beside the school. The other two cubs were stuck in a nearby dumpster.

By the time most students arrived the bears, tranquilized but uninjured, were in cages and on their way to the Critter Care Wildlife Society in Langley.

"There was no risk to any students or teachers going to work, because it was too early," said Coquitlam RCMP spokesperson Jamie Chung.

"We are asking people to keep garbage covered up and keep food items locked up," added Chung. Bears at this time of year are searching for food before they hibernate.