Designing an Effective Education Program and Regulations to Reduce Conflicts with Bears in Suburban Areas
Conflicts between humans and black bears in urban settings challenge the wellbeing of both human communities and black bear populations. As human urban communities develop and expand into areas with bears present, conflicts between humans and bears may also increase. It is important to utilize available tools such as education and regulatory bylaws to reduce the number of black bear conflicts and resultant number of black bears killed in response. This internship will be completed in partnership with the North Shore Black Bear Society to examine factors influencing human behavior relating to the management of anthropogenic food sources on the North Shore of Vancouver such as: attitudes and perspectives towards black bears and their management, associated risk perception and fear of black bears, knowledge of bear safety, and acceptability and effectiveness of current educational programs and regulatory policies intended to change human behavior in the management of conflict. Understanding and identifying underlying causes of conflict will allow for improved education programs tailored to address the knowledge gaps and unique beliefs and values of target communities as well as extend the current reach and influence of education and community outreach on the North Shore. "TO BE CONT'D"