April 22, 2011 Undercurrent

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This week's issue

Text of April 22, 2011 Undercurrent

  • Wolf hybrid to be killed

    Ferry hike would affect two-thirds of islanders habits:online survey

    MARCUS HONDRO

    S T A F F C O N T R I B U T O R

    The wolf/dog hybrid continues to roam, and hunt, on Bowen and with efforts to capture and remove the beast having failed, the municipality has shifted its goal from capture to having the creature shot.

    BIM has issued another alert and there have been more reports of missing pets.

    Bylaw services supervisor Chris Buchanan told the Undercurrent in an email this week that the municipality has hired a new con-tractor who has the expertise to dispatch the beast. BIM now must wait for the the issuance of a permit to allow for the dis-charge of a firearm in a No Shooting Area as designated by... the Closed Areas Regulation (Wildlife Act).

    Buchanan said they requested a permit that will allow them to address more than one hybrid in case there is more than one though there is nothing that points to a sec-ond creature. The provincial officials said theyd work to expedite the permit pro-cess and he expects the permit to be issued around the end of this month.

    Sightings have been ongoing since early in the New Year. In January one resident had the unpleasant experience of coming upon the hybrid standing over a kill his own dog. The creature was determined to be a hybrid after a photo was examined by biologists, and others, from conservation services.

    Bowen vet Alastair Westcott has tried to capture the canine with a tranquilizer gun to safely remove it.

    MARCUS HONDRO

    S T A F F C O N T R I B U T O R

    This might not surprise anyone but here goes... A online survey by the Bowen Island Ferry Advisory Committee shows that Islanders are very concerned about rising ferry costs.

    The survey was conducted online from late Feb. to April 1. There were 234 respondents.

    Committee member Bill Van Luven says the survey was intended to give the commit-tee an idea of where Bowen Islanders stand at a time when B.C. Ferries appears set to raise fares by 50 per cent or more over the next few years. He told the Undercurrent that it ...helps the communitys bargaining position and gives us a single voice, and puts strength behind it.

    Of those 234 respondents who answered the 20 questions, 85.8 percent said they lived on Bowen all year and 63.7 percent said they drive onto the ferry for 80 per cent or more of their trips, with 19.9 per cent saying they walk on for 80 per cent of their trips, or more.

    One question noted that B.C. Ferries proj-ects fares to increase by 12 per cent a year for the next five years.

    Thirty-four per cent said that such increas-es will significantly affect the number of trips they take, with another 33 per cent saying it will substantially affect the number of trips. The remaining 32.6 per cent of respondents were equally divided between saying the increases would not affect or have only a slight effect on their travelling patterns.

    KILLER SONG Who needs a trip to New York when Broadway can come to Bowen? On Friday and Saturday night, audiences at Cates Hill Chapel were captivated by Bowen performers showcasing Broadway tunes. The dazzling Lauren Spear portrays vaudevillian murderess Velma Kelley singing All That Jazz from the musical Chicago. See more local stars captured on pages 8 and 9. Lorraine Ashdown photo

    All personal lending products and residential mortgages are offered by Royal Bank of Canada and are subject to its standard lending criteria. Registered trademarks of Royal Bank of Canada. RBC and Royal Bank are registered trademarks of Royal Bank of Canada. Rates are effective as of August 24, 2010. Interest Rate compounded half-yearly, not in advance. Rate subject to change without notice.

    TM

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    Steep slope bylawPublic will now have chance to comment on new land use rules

    The dolphins are backAnd the return of herring to Squamish might get the credit

    Candidates responseOil tankers, party allegiance and old age pensions are this weeks questions

    FRIDAY APRIL 22, 2011

    V O L . 3 8 , N O . 1 1

    Watch for more online at: WWW.BOWENISLANDUNDERCURRENT.COM

    75 including HST

    continued, PAGE 2 continued, PAGE 10

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    Bowen Island Community Partner Branch

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    Dr. Westcott feels shooting the animal is dan-gerous because another dog could mistakenly be shot and a miss could potentially harm a human. Shooting the wrong dog with a tranquilizer gun is an error that can be reversed.

    The vet and local RCMP caution any Islander against shooting the beast. Cpl. Don Southern says that it is illegal and that wounding the ani-mal could make it all the more dangerous. Dr. Westcott says if anyone sees it they can call his emergency pager at (604) 806-2244 with place, time and direction details and he will seek to capture it.

    Westcott said that if it cannot be rehabilitated, and it likely cannot, it may have to be eutha-nized; at the moment the primary issue is safely removing it from Bowen Island.

    A trap had been brought over by the first con-tractor but the animal either did not encounter the trap or, if it did, did not enter into it. It has been sighted around Cowan Point, Tunstall Bay and the Cape Roger Curtis areas and at least one golfer encountered the beast on the Bowen Island Golf Course.

    There have been deer carcasses found which may have been the handiwork of the hybrid and the number of pets missing is growing. On its website, CAWES, the Coast Animal Welfare and Education Society on Bowen, has a list of two dozen Bowen pets currently missing, almost all cats. Some have been missing since 2010 but most since January, including the cat Aengus, missing from Woods Road since April 4.

    Buchanan said the municipality decided to kill the hybrid for a variety of reasons: the humane trap was not successful, any use of leg-hold traps would endanger wildlife and pets, and based on reports of damage already caused, allowing the hybrid to continue to roam the island will fur-ther risk to humans, livestock, domestic pets and wildlife.

    continued, PAGE 1

    Steep slope bylaw ready for commentMARTHA PERKINS

    E D I T O R

    The steep slope bylaw is now ready to go to the public for comment.On Monday night, council passed

    first and second reading of the bylaw, which is a complement to the offi-cial community plan update. The only councillor voting against it was Alison Morse; councillors Cro Lucas and Peter Frinton were not at the meeting.

    The bylaw incorporates several changes to the first version that was presented to council a few weeks ago.

    Director of planning Hap Stelling got a legal opinion about the bylaw from the municipalitys solicitor. The lawyer said the document could not include language that permitted special condi-tions or objectives, nor could it include permissive exemptions. These represent discretionary authority that is not grant-ed under the Local Government Act.

    After those permissive exemptions had been removed, Councillor Morse had concerns about the regulatory powers of the bylaw. For instance, she said that anytime someone w