The Ministry of Forests announced Friday it is putting vehicle restrictions in place for areas impacted by the Elephant Hill, Chilcotin Plateau and Hanceville-Riske Creek fires to protect wildlife. Monica Lamb-Yorski photo

Vehicle restrictions in place to protect big game in wildfire areas

Ministry implements vehicle restrictions in areas impacted by fires to protect wildlife

To protect big game wildlife in areas severely affected by the summer’s wildfires the province announced late Friday it is putting two motor vehicle restrictions in place.

Wildfires in the Thompson and Cariboo regions have enabled motor vehicle access by hunters to remote moose and mule deer habitats that were previously only accessible by foot, the Ministry of Forests said in a press release, noting in addition, loss of vegetation from fires has significantly increased lines of sight for hunters.

Under the wildlife act, there are now restrictions in the Elephant Hill fire area of the Thompson region and within the Chilcotin Plateau and Hanceville-Riske Creek fires, effective until Dec. 10.

READ MORE: Hunting season being “assessed”by provincial government

READ MORE: Wildlife may survive these wildfires, if they’re fast

In the Elephant Hill fire area the use of ATVs for the purpose of licensed hunting is prohibited within Management Units 3-28, 3-29, and 3-30, and that portion of Management Unit 3-17 north of Highway 99.

Within the Chilcotin Plateau and Hanceville-Riske Creek fire areas the use of all motor vehicles for the purpose of licensed hunting is prohibited except on designated highways and mainline forestry roads.

The restrictions are expected to be in place until access and visibility conditions return to a state where wildlife are less vulnerable, the ministry said, noting the new restrictions do not apply to First Nations exercising Aboriginal rights to hunt.

Government will monitor the effectiveness of the restrictions and dependent on the review, further hunting restrictions may be implemented.

As wildfires in the East Kootenays have also been severe, the province is currently reviewing their extent and impact on wildlife, which may lead to further access restrictions, the ministry noted.

B.C. wildfires 2017

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

‘Made in the Cowichan Valley’ coming to a wine bottle near you

Buyers across the province will soon be able to pick up a… Continue reading

Minivan driver’s speed a factor in fatal 2018 Malahat crash

Driver was travelling at 101 km/h in a construction zone

B.C. sees 25 new COVID-19 cases, community exposure tracked

One death, outbreaks remain in two long-term care facilities

RCMP ‘disappointed’ by talk that race a factor in quiet Rideau Hall arrest

Corey Hurren, who is from Manitoba, is facing 22 charges

NHL’s Canadian hubs offer little economic benefit, but morale boost is valuable: experts

Games are slated to start Aug. 1 with six Canadian teams qualifying for the 24-team resumption of play

VIDEO: Vancouver Island cat missing 18 months reunited with family

Blue the cat found at Victoria museum 17 kilometres from home

VIDEO: Alberta man rescues baby eagle believed to be drowning in East Kootenay lake

Brett Bacon was boating on a lake in Windermere when he spotted the baby eagle struggling in the water

Vancouver Island business ad unintentionally features OK gesture linked to white supremacy

Innocuous ‘OK’ gesture in cleaning franchise advertisement gets flak on social media for ‘supposedly’ promoting white supremacy

Comox Valley RCMP looking for missing woman

Ami Guthrie was last seen in Courtenay in early July

Conservationists raise concerns over state of care for grizzly cubs transferred to B.C. zoo

‘Let them be assessed now before their fate is sealed,’ urges B.C. conservationist Barb Murray

B.C.’s COVID-19 job recovery led by tourism, finance minister says

Okanagan a bright spot for in-province visitor economy

Most Read