What would Smokey say?

We remember that Smokey the Bear used to stand on guard, protecting continental forests.  These days there’s some concern about who’s standing on guard in the woods.  The cutback in numbers of BC’s full-time and seasonal rangers in the past decade is significant.  Stories of an 800 year-old cedar tree stolen by poachers in ‘protected’ coastal Carmanah on Vancouver Island prompted added security deployed over this holiday weekend.. as forestry technicians and science officers took up positions in the face of a park ranger shortage.  The reality of tree poaching in a time of firming lumber prices, at the same time as fire season approaches, might encourage some re-examination of priorities.  At least that’s what Smokey thinks.

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