As most of you have heard via newspaper articles, radio shows and television news broadcasts, there is a concern in the Christina Lake community regarding stray boars.
Issues pertaining to personal safety, property damage, non-native species introduction and the potential impacts to wildlife are being addressed by the Ministry of Environment Conservation Officer Service.
According to Sgt. Arnold DeBoon from the BC Conservation Officer Service, “These boars are not considered wildlife and are not regulated as wildlife under The Wildlife Act, therefore we have no authority to extend permission to anyone to hunt them,” he says.
“At this point they are still considered to be the property of their owner and for us to allow others to hunt them is akin to allowing people to take property from him without his permission,” DeBoon explains.
“If the owner decides he wants nothing further to do with them, they become property of the Crown. The Wildlife Act allows officers to kill an animal that is at large and is likely to harm persons, property, wildlife or wildlife habitat.
“That would apply to these pigs and only grants permission to officers. The other reason we won’t extend permission to hunt them is that, at this time, we have no idea of what safety issues would come into play if it became a free-for-all.”
He says there are safety concerns as well.
“It is also unlawful to hunt or discharge a firearm within 100 metres of a church, school building, school yard, regional district park, dwelling house, or farm or ranch building that is occupied by persons or domestic animals.
“The only exception to this is a person is allowed to discharge a firearm on their own property to kill an animal that is a threat to them, their property, or to domestic stock on their property,” he goes on to say.
If you observe these boars, document location, date and time and immediately contact the Conservation Officer Service (24 hrs) at 1-877-952-7277.