In a novel promotion that encourages bear hunters to reconsider shooting animals and instead appreciate them alive, an ecotourism company in Canada is now offering a free tour for lucky contestants who make the commitment to put down their guns.
As part of a raffle being hosted by the Spirit Bear Lodge, a wildlife guide operator managed by aborigines from British Columbia's Coastal First Nations, two winning hunters will receive an "all-expenses-paid, five-night, guided bear-viewing experience," but only after handing in their valid hunting licences.
With a business model based on appreciating animals, unharmed in their natural environment, the Lodge says that bears are more valuable alive than dead. Not surprisingly then, hunting has been banned on First Nations-owned land, but still an average of 300 bears are killed each year in other parts of the province -- part of an outdoor pastime that the coalition's executive director Chris Genovali says is wrong:
"The ethical argument is clear: killing for sport and amusement is unacceptable and, a lot of people would say, just outright immoral."