Phyllis McCall was still in her pyjamas around 8:30 a.m. Wednesday when she heard her dog barking loudly outside her Metchosin home – he was clearly upset about something in their backyard.
— Aaron Guillen (@iaaronguillen) June 10, 2020
She quickly called her shih tzu bichon inside and began scanning the yard of their home along Barrow Road when three shapes caught her eye in the nearby treeline – it was a bear with her two cubs. The bears spent a minute or two in the yard before walking to the next door neighbour.
“The mom was very laid back,” said McCall, a Metchosin resident for 38 years. “It’s only been the past six years or so that I’ve started seeing bears [in the neighbourhood] and it was the best moment to see those two babies running around.”
The last time McCall spotted a bear was when one climbed into her apple tree and broke a branch back in 2019. She said although the mother bear started digging out her brand new maple tree, she had no interest in calling B.C. Conservation.
“I don’t ever want to have a bear killed,” said McCall, pointing out that she didn’t call B.C. Conservation. “If I was actually worried, I’d just make noises to scare them off. I’m not scared and we’ve got to realize we live with bears and cougars in our area.”
This latest spotting comes after two back-to-back sightings of black bears in View Royal in early June and another bear that was euthanized by B.C. Conservation officers in Langford around the same time. Notably, a bear attacked and killed a rottweiler near Matheson Lake in Metchosin in mid May.
“People need to realize they live in bear territory,” Sgt. Scott Norris with B.C. Conservation Office said previously. “There’s a law to follow which exists to protect bears, the public and pets.”
Residents can call the Conservation Officer Service at 1-877-952-7277 (RAPP) if a bear poses an immediate threat or danger to public safety.