Bison herd on the loose in rural Manitoba
Published Sunday, January 20, 2013 8:28PM EST
Officials in a rural Manitoba municipality are warning residents about a herd of bison that has been spotted roaming the community since last summer.
Authorities in the Rural Municipality of St. Clements, which is about 60 kilometres northeast of Winnipeg, say they’ve received a few complaints about the bison, which are believed to be from the Brokenhead First Nation Reserve.
Ken Sims, from St. Clements Emergency Measures Office, says they’ve been dealing with the First Nations community for a few months now in an effort to help them manage the herd. He said the bison are difficult to contain.
“If they decide food is better on the other side of the fence, they’re such large animals, they’ll just move through the fence,” he said.
Sims warned residents that the bison should not be confronted, as they can become aggressive.
On Sunday, Wally and Brenda Serger awoke to find 50 bison sitting 100 feet from their rural property. They are becoming concerned by regular sightings of the herd in the area.
“They keep coming over and disturbing us,” Wally Serger said. “They’re nice to look at, but it’s a domestic animal. It belongs to somebody else.”
Now, they must keep their dog on a tight leash instead of letting her run free in their expansive yard.
The Sergers say they contact local officials once a week about the bison. On Sunday, the Sergers said something spooked the herd, and they fled.
The Sergers say they don’t plan to take any action, but are hoping the owners take steps to ensure their bison are secure.
It was not confirmed whether the bison were still on the loose Sunday evening. A phone call to the Brokenhead band office was not immediately returned.
With a report from CTV Winnipeg’s Rajeev Dhir