Aug 17, 2012 / 4:30 pm
Less than a week after the remains of a moose were found at Cedar Falls Campground in Vernon, the operators of the campground claim to have found more wild animal remains.
When Paul Cousins arrived for work Friday morning, August 17, he learned the manager of the campsite had found four bear paws the day before.
"Diana (Wende) came up and said she had found the paws to go along with the skins that were collected there earlier in the week, and have since been reported in the media as moose hides," says Cousins.
"Which I don't believe for a second because I've seen these things. I've never seen a moose with hair like that. When they (Conservation Officers) first picked them up they said 'That's a grizzly hide and we know where it came from and we're going to pick the guy up for dumping it here,' and then all of a sudden they have their weekly meeting with the RCMP and now they're reported as moose hides."
Cousins says what he saw looked nothing like moose hides. Also, the hides looked very similar in colour to a pair of bear cubs which used to inhabit the area.
Cubs which he says haven't been seen in four months.
"There were two roughly cub-sized skins sitting there. If it was a large hide, it was separated in half and separated by 10 feet of bush which wouldn't make a whole lot of sense if somebody had considered doing the taxidermy to it. The two colours on the pelts that we saw were quite different. One was a light brown and one was a dark brown."
Cousins says he later heard that they reported finding a moose hide with two bear paws underneath it.
"That's not consistent with what I found because somebody (later) moved one of the hides on top of the other. I don't know if it was two bear cubs, but it was four and a half to five inch long fur. I've never seen that on a moose."
Cousins says Thursday's discovery was made not far from where the original discovery was made after one of their dogs ran into the woods and returned with one of the paws.
"So Diana went back to where the dog was and found the other three and the vertebrae of what I'm assuming to be a bear because it was in the same pile. Rather than leave them there for the other dogs to get sick on, she bagged them and brought them up here."
Cousins is sure these paws belong to one or two bears.
"They're very obviously not moose or deer. They're five fingered paws and separated at the wrist. Two rear and two fores and I'm thinking that they're from two different animals because one of the fore-paws is smaller than the other one."
As for how they got there, no conclusion has been reached yet.
Conservation Officers did find evidence the hides were treated by a taxidermist and Cousins worries that someone, possibly a taxidermist, has been discarding animal remains in the area.
Read more Vernon News
- Cussing and spitting his way to jail May 21
- Cycling across Canada for a cause May 20
- 4th annual YAA Festival May 18
- Chitty-Maverick bang bang grounded May 17
- Coldstream house fire May 16