This marks the third time the bird feeders have been smashed
The owners of a local tour guiding company are once again reeling from the destruction of their birdfeeders.
Last week, a set of bird feeders that the company set up on the interpretive snowshoe trail near the big red barn were destroyed for the third time this season.
Colin Cannon, owner-operator of Discover Sun Peaks Adventures, said the bird feeders serve as an important stop along the interpretive trail, where people can view birds up close.
He said that the bird feeders are especially popular with young guests.
“I think it’s incredibly important for the children to see the birds and see their habitat,” he said. “If kids learn about nature, they will then feel responsible for the nature.”
The bird feeders were first destroyed in December. At that point, Cannon thought that perhaps a “monster squirrel” was responsible.
Cannon promptly replaced the bird feeders, selecting heavy-duty versions to install on the site.
A couple weeks later, the feeders were once again destroyed.
Cannon said he found some of the birdfeeders “smashed” on the ground, while others were thrown into the nearby McGillivray Creek.
Cannon said he was devastated by the discovery, and there is no doubt in his mind that someone or some people were behind the acts of vandalism.
“The ropes had been smashed and dropped to the ground, and all the bird feeders [were] gone, including one that isn’t even mine,” he said. “Someone had put one up for geocaching.”
Cannon found a bamboo pole near the scene of the crime.
“I suspect that the bamboo pole was used to bash all the bird feeders down and break the ropes,” he said.
Cannon said no one has reached out to him directly with concerns about the bird feeders.
He added he does not believe the feeders pose a threat to local wildlife. The food he puts in them—sunflower seeds, sunflower seed oil and suet—serves a supplement, rather than a staple to the natural diets of the birds that feed there.
Moreover, he takes precautions to ensure that other animals do not feed on them.
“At the end of the winter, I take all the bird feeders down,” said Cannon. “I clean up the ground … and get rid of all evidence of the bird feeders. The reason being is we have a good healthy population of bears, and they walk up and down this valley. I don’t want them associating any food with [the area].”
Cannon, who has been operating snowshoe tours of the area for over twenty years, said that he hopes that whomever is destroying the bird feeders will stop.
“To be honest with you, we’re a small family-run business here in Sun Peaks and COVID is not doing any favors to us at all,” he said.
“So things like having to replace bird feeding feeders, it’s not something that was in my budget, but I’ve got to do it.”
Cannon would also like the public to speak up if they learn who is destroying the bird feeders.
“Have a word with them, and say, ‘Hey, you know what? That company is trying to provide an educational component to the kids as well as all of our visitors. Why wreck it for the little kids?'”