Electric fences save lives

We have both black and grizzly bears around our property from time to time, but there’s been no need to kill them.


We live in Hills and have chickens for eggs. Living in a rural area set into the wilderness, we have both black and grizzly bears around our property from time to time, but there’s been no need to kill them.

Three reasons for this: first, a stout predator-proof building for a chicken coop; second, a 10-foot high fence around the coop and chicken-yard; and third, an electric fence consisting of four strands of wire around the perimeter hooked to a 6,000-volt charger.

The occasional bear has tested the system and received a jolt of pain for its efforts. Any bears we see wandering too close to the house or coop get a bear banger (noisemaker) shot over their heads.

Your recent article “Grizzly slaughter highlights bear unawareness…” mentions that bears were “ripping into ducks, turkeys and chickens.” Let’s ask this: how were the bears getting at those animals?

Most likely guess: fowl kept in inadequate, poorly-built, dilapidated structures with rickety fences and without electric fencing protecting the perimeter.

Did you know that you can be ticketed for providing unsecured bear attractants?

The Wildlife Act was recently amended so there is a $230 ticket for negligence or carelessness regarding the mismanagement of attractants on your property (such as improperly stored garbage or improperly secured animals).

Education and awareness-building is the first step but thereafter those who don’t secure their farm animals should be ticketed.

Another consideration: requiring the services of the Conservation Officer to come and shoot bears costs taxpayers thousands of dollars. Just the cost to us taxpayers of the CO trying to deal with the family of grizzlies that developed a taste for fowl in the Arrow Park/Burton/Brouse area would have bought a lot of electric fencing for chicken runs – electric fences that would have prevented the loss of livestock and likely saved the bears’ lives.

A note for those considering backyard chickens to provide delicious eggs: consider that the cost of getting chickens will include building a sturdy structure for a coop and installing a clearly signed and well-maintained electric fence around your chicken run.

This will address Mayor Hamling’s concern about bears potentially being attracted into town by backyard chickens. Bears learn very quickly that while chickens might smell tasty, a jolt of electricity feels bad.

While on this topic, remember that garbage must be stored in a secure shed/garage or in a bear-proof container. If you attract a bear to your yard through your carelessness it can end very badly for the bear.

Having bears in our midst comes with the privilege of living in such a beautiful area, where we fortunately still have a connection to the natural world.

Respectful coexistence is possible. Electric fencing is necessary for all livestock – the hardware store in Nakusp carries or can order the items needed.



Lorna Visser

Fowlty Towers Artisan Eggs,


Hills B.C.



Just Posted

New Denver losing 24/7 emergency care

Doctor shortage prompts change to local emergency room hours

New Glade ferry enters testing phase

The Glade II will be able to carry heavier loads and will emit less greenhouse gases.

Freezing rain warning in effect for B.C. Southern Interior

Environment Canada issued the freezing rain warning for most of the Southern Interior Tuesday morning

Smiles all around as province announces emergency ward funding

$2.1 million to go to much-needed upgrades

As avalanche danger grows, BC heli-skiers exercise caution

Company relies on guides’ decades of experience

Solitary-confinement veto a chance to address mental health: advocate

B.C. Supreme Court made the landmark ruling Wednesday

Winter storm coming to B.C. this weekend

The bets are on as to how much snow the province will actually get in the coming days

B.C. civil rights group files complaint about RCMP arrest of man who later died

Dale Culver, a 35-year-old Indigenous man was arrested in Prince George last July

Lawyer says former B.C. government aide ‘barely guilty’ in ethnic vote scandal

Brian Bonney pleaded guilty to a breach of trust charge

Quite a few tears as homemade quilts distributed to residents of Ashcroft Reserve, Boston Flats affected by last summer’s fire

Quilters in B.C. and Alberta worked through the summer and fall to create more than 100 quilts.

Island Health: No need for alarm in wake of Victoria needle-prick incidents

Three incidents in a week prompts meeting between health authority, city service providers

B.C. coast loggers celebrate history, hope for improvement

Truck Loggers Association awaits B.C. NDP government’s new direction

Global Affairs aware of report of two Canadians kidnapped in Nigeria

The foreigners were heading south from Kafanchan to Abuja when they were ambushed around Kagarko

Whistler role in potential Calgary Olympic bid would be welcome: IOC

Calgary is mulling whether to vie for the 2026 Games, and could look to facilities in B.C.

Most Read