In a post Monday on its Facebook page, the Conservation Officer Service said two individuals from Alberta have been fined for snowmobiling in an area closed to protect mountain caribou.
The fines totalled more than $1,600 for the pair for riding in an area near Revelstoke, designated for mountain caribou.
“The Conservation Officer Service would like to remind the public that recreational snowmobiling in illegal areas can displace mountain caribou from high-quality winter habitat, impacting an already threatened population,” the Facebook post said.
The incident was caught when Conservation Officers on a helicopter patrol in an area north of Revelstoke spotted 25 caribou.
The Conservation Officer Service said later during the patrol the COs spotted two snow bike riders in the middle of the SaleMountain closure. The COs then landed and stopped the riders.
The Conservation Officer Service said one rider was charged with snowmobiling in a closed area and failing to produce documents and identification, for a total of $748.
The second rider was charged for using or operating a snowmobile in a closed area, failing to produce documents and identification and failing to display a number plate, decal or sticker of other jurisdiction, for a total of $921.
“Snowmobile closures to protect critical mountain caribou habitat are in place across B.C.,” the Conservation Officer Service said.
The Conservation Officer Service said patrols are continuing through the winter.