May 26, 2021
Severed, Discarded Bear Paws Indicate Cruel, Unlawful Poaching that Violates Game Laws and Indigenous Values
((Xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam), Sḵwx̱wú7mesh (Squamish) and səlilwətaɬ (Tsleil-Waututh)/Vancouver, B.C. – May 26, 2021) The Union of BC Indian Chiefs (UBCIC) is appalled and horrified at the gruesome discovery of 80-100 severed bear paws – 20-25 bears in total – near Shuswap Lake on May 23, 2021. The carnage left behind indicates the actions of trophy or commercial poachers who hold a complete lack of respect for wildlife, hunting laws, and the rights of other resource users.
UBCIC has previously expressed alarm at “wolf-whacking” and “predator tournaments” occurring in the province that allow the gratuitous and ruthless slaughter of wildlife. The dozens of discarded bear paws demonstrate that this callous attitude towards the killing of animals persists. Trophy hunting or poaching goes against Indigenous hunting practices, and UBCIC urges hunters to hunt, fish, and trap sustainably and ethically – never for unwarranted bloodshed and the glorification of violence. By Resolution 2021-05, UBCIC reaffirmed its hunting mandate that is guided by principles of sustainability and stewardship, including the principle that the mismanagement of wildlife in BC, including illegal poaching, is unacceptable and goes against the traditions and values of BC First Nation who maintain deep spiritual connections to their lands, waters, and all living things.
UBCIC calls on all hunters to ensure their hunting practices reflect these integral principles and urges anyone with information that may help identify the person or persons who disposed of the bear paws to contact the conservation officer service at 1-877-952-7277.
Grand Chief Stewart Phillip, President, 250-490-5314
Chief Don Tom, Vice-President, 250-813-3315
Kukpi7 Judy Wilson, Secretary-Treasurer, c/o 778-866-0548
UBCIC is an NGO in Special Consultative Status with the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations. For more information please visit www.ubcic.bc.ca