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October 20, 2009

Join HSI/Canada’s Race to Save the Bears — and Win a Trip to See Them

Humane Society International

Great Bear Nature Tours has teamed up with Humane Society International Canada to save bears in the Great Bear Rainforest. In support of the HSI Canada online Race to Save the Bears fundraising challenge, Great Bear Nature Tours has donated the grand prize of a trip for two to view grizzly and black bears in the Great Bear Rainforest.

"We are very proud to support Humane Society International Canada in its campaign to stop trophy hunting of bears in the Great Bear Rainforest," said Tom Rivest of Great Bear Nature Tours. "Bears are important both to the complex ecosystems of the Great Bear Rainforest and to the culture of the First Nations people whose lands they share. These creatures are a global treasure and simply must be protected."

Rebecca Aldworth, director of Humane Society International Canada, added, "We are so grateful to Great Bear Nature Tours for their generous support. By joining our Race to Save the Bears, Canadians can help us save countless grizzly and black bears from senseless trophy hunting."

Great Bear Nature Tours is rated by National Geographic Adventure as one of the best adventure travel companies on Earth. It is a founder of the Commercial Bear Viewing Association of British Columbia, an organization dedicated to promoting sustainable bear viewing in British Columbia and aiding in the protection of wild bears and their ecosystems.

Participants in the HSI Canada fundraising challenge are also eligible to win:

  • a signed print entitled, "Great Bear Guardian," donated by renowned wildlife photographer Ian McAllister (approximate retail value of $600)
  • a Canon PowerShot A1100 IS 12.1 megapixels digital camera (approximate retail value $200)
  • Protect Bears T-shirts (approximate retail value of $25)

Facts:

  • Grizzly and black bears are gunned down by trophy hunters in the spring and fall in the Great Bear Rainforest. Vulnerable bears are often killed as they emerge from hibernation and forage for food. Cubs may be orphaned in the process, condemned to a slow death from starvation.
  • Of the 430 grizzlies killed in 2007 in British Columbia, 87 percent were killed by trophy hunters.
  • Bear viewing is far more lucrative than bear hunting in British Columbia. One bear-watching operation in Knight Inlet grossed more than $3 million in direct revenue alone in 2007, which is more than all trophy grizzly hunting revenue in British Columbia combined.
  • A 2009 Ipsos Reid poll shows that 79 percent of British Columbians oppose the trophy hunting of bears in the Great Bear Rainforest.
  • Coastal First Nations oppose the trophy hunting of bears for cultural and spiritual reasons, and note that bear viewing provides far more economic benefit to their communities than bear trophy hunting.

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Humane Society International Canada is a leading force for animal protection, representing tens of thousands of members and constituents across the country. HSI Canada has active programs in companion animals, wildlife and habitat protection, marine mammal preservation and farm animal welfare. HSI Canada is proud to be a part of Humane Society International — one of the largest animal protection organizations in the world, with more than ten million members and constituents globally — on the web at hsicanada.ca.

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