Dan LeGrandeur is the president and chief instructor at Bear Scare Ltd. He has more than 25 years field experience working with bears and other wildlife, first as a Conservation Officer in British Columbia, then as the creator of Bear Scare Ltd. and through his work as an educator, training others in techniques for safely co-existing with bears and other wildlife.
Dan's experiences with wildlife actually began when in the late 1980's when he started as a Conservation Officer. By studying bears, learning about their behaviour and why they act the way they do, Dan developed a technique for non-lethal bear management, which basically involves presenting yourself as the 'baddest bear' during a bear encounter.
During his time as a B.C. Conservation Officer, Dan worked in a wide range of environments, ranging from the urban areas of North and West Vancouver to the coastal and rural areas of southwestern B.C. Dan also gained extensive experience in dealing with a wide variety of conflict situations involving cougars, black bears and grizzlies in farming/ranching, remote work camps, recreational situations and even urban areas. Dan is also a qualified firearms instructor and has considerable experience conducting training courses and public speaking.
Dan was a member of Whistler's Black Bear Task Team and in 1999, he implemented Canada's first non/lethal bear management program in Whistler. Dan was a guest speaker at the 2003 New Jersey Black Bear Conference and testified at the New Jersey State Senate Environmental Commission Hearings regarding human/bear conflicts.
Steve Sandahl acquired a vast array of experiences and technical skills during 30 plus years with the Canadian Forces. He is an expert in mountaineering, caving, technical rescue and survival and has passed on his knowledge and skills while working as an instructor/trainer and expedition leader, both nationally and internationally. While with the Canadian Forces, he was a senior instructor for all mountain and arctic survival training, including mountain, cave and arctic rescue incidents.
Steve also has an extensive background in everything firearms-related and has represented various local, provincial and federal agencies as a specialist on surveillance, security and investigative assignments.
Mitch C. Kendall is the head firearms instructor for Bear Scare. He has trained in firearms with the RCMP and the Canadian Military and is the provincial COS lead for firearms armouring. Mitch is currently employed as a conservation officer in the Commercial Environmental Investigations unit and has worked at several posts in B.C. and Alberta, where he gained a lot of experience in problem wildlife response.
Along with his regular duties, Mitch has been part of a team tasked with providing firearms training to new recruits at the Western Conservation Law Enforcement Academy in Hinton, Alberta. He also oversees the armouring of firearms issued to officers in B.C. and conducts annual qualification shoots and training exercises. Mitch also worked for a time as an RCMP officer. Over the years he has had opportunity to work closely with the First Nations and helping band members work with the Ministry of Environment and Forests.
As part of his education, Mitch has completed many courses related to his current work with firearms and wildlife awareness and training, including: RCMP Coaches Course, RCMP Basic Firearms Instructor, Conservation Officer Service Firearms Instructor, Glock Armourers Course and Recertification, Alberta Hunter Education Instructor Certificate and Conservation Outdoor Education Instructor.
Brett Cooper is a qualified PAL instructor, hunter education instructor and certified teacher who enjoys teaching survival training to all age groups. He is currently a high school administrator, with 21 years teaching experience.
Brett also has 17 years experience as a volunteer fire fighter in northern British Columbia and Alberta. Currently, he is a captain at the Westlock Fire Department.
Brett has been a bear monitor, a bear awareness instructor and a valuable resource to the Bear Scare team. Brett says working with Bear Scare has been a dream come true, fulfilling his desire to share his knowledge and passion while working in the outdoors.
Guy L'Heureux has spent most of his working life travelling throughout western and northern Canada, sharing his expertise on wildlife management and resource law enforcement and working as a conservation officer. He spent two years working with the Government of Nunavut Department of Sustainable Development, Wildlife Branch and several years working for the British Columbia Ministry of Environment as a Resource Enforcement Training officer and a Conservation Officer. Guy joined Bear Scare earlier in 2012 and his vast experience and field of knowledge have been a great addition to the teaching team.
Working with Dan LeGrandeur and Bear Scare Ltd. was an eye-opening experience for me. In 2011 we literally experienced a 'bear invasion' at our work camps in northern Alberta. More than 20 black bear visits were reported to our Environmental Department during a two-month period ... we needed swift action to protect our staff, clients and customers. In a short period of time, Dan made it happen. Using non-lethal techniques, he and his colleagues managed to deter more than 15 black bears from our camps (while) providing valuable training and advice to our front line workers. Thank you Dan!
~ Taras Senyuta, Environmental Manager PTI Group Inc., Edmonton
The Bear Scare Awareness Training was extremely informative and more than enjoyable to be part of. The situational videos give you a better picture of how to deal with wildlife properly. Dan's training give you more than the necessary tools for assessing any given situation while working in Alberta bear country. I recommend it to anyone considering any wildlife awareness training.
~ Russ Jackson, Supervisor - Lodge Safety Noralta Lodge Ltd., Nisku
Bear Scare Ltd. provides some of the best wildlife training in the industry. With reliable and comprehensive training, Bear Scare Ltd. is the best choice for all wildlife training courses.
~ Kai Rasporich ConocoPhillips
Being a Health, Safety and Environmental professional, I was tasked to find a solution for the increasing number of bear encounters our field staff were having. This is when I had the pleasure of being introduced to Dan and his non-lethal deterrent approach to effective bear management. I had what I thought was some good experience with bears, but Dan completely changed the way I thought about bear management. His experience and enthusiasm showed as he walked us through what we had to do immediately and long term to help ... decrease encounters. Dan was able to assist with an assessment of our locations, producing detailed recommendations we were able to put into action. He also provided direct, non-lethal bear management techniques. Basically, he helped the bears understand where not to go. I guess you could say that Dan educated both us and the bears. To watch him work is amazing. In my books, he's the Bear Whisperer.
~ Jason O'Donnell HSE Works, Inc.
The information and education presented by Bear Scare Ltd. has been an invaluable asset in assisting the Oil Sands Developers Group and its membership in their efforts to become Bear Smart. Companies presenting at the workshops often refer to the guidance received by Dan LeGrandeur helping them successfully reduce bear/human interactions. We look forward to working together again in the future.
~ Carol Christian Oil Sands Developers Group