Bear Activity Report

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Bear Activity: October 26 to November 1

'Pumpkin and Tree Fruit Only' bin at 115 Boulder Crescent Recycling Depot


(Banff National Park East Gate to Bow Valley Provincial Park)

For the period: October 26 to November 1, 2018

Welcome to the weekly bear report!


It was a quiet week for bears in the Bow Valley and cold weather will likely speed up the process of bears heading into their dens. Grizzly bears continue to be seen moving around K-Country searching for food, and there has been a decrease in black bear activity, likely due to the fact that black bears tend to head into their dens earlier than grizzly bears. Bears are opportunistic feeders and will eat anything that is available to them, as is evident in this article and video. *Please note that the video’s audio contains strong language and some disturbing sounds.*

Photo by Jamin Mulvey

Photo by Jamin Mulvey

Two days after Halloween, and there are still many pumpkins sitting on doorsteps and smashed up in peoples’ yards. Please dispose of your pumpkins properly to help keep wildlife outside of residential areas! Check out this video of moose eating pumpkins on a porch. In Canmore, pumpkins can be taken to the bear proof ‘Pumpkin and Tree Fruit Only’ bins at the 115 Boulder Crescent Recycling Depot (open 8 am – 5 pm, 7 days a week) and downtown between Save on Foods and Canadian Tire (open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week). Remember to remove candles and other non organic decorations as the bins are for PUMPKINS ONLY!

'Pumpkin and Tree Fruit Only' bin at 115 Boulder Crescent Recycling Depot

‘Pumpkin and Tree Fruit Only’ bin at 115 Boulder Crescent Recycling Depot

'Pumpkin and Tree Fruit Only' bin downtown between Canadian Tire and Save on Foods

‘Pumpkin and Tree Fruit Only’ bin downtown between Save on Foods and Canadian Tire

Staying awake longer to look for more food increases the odds that bears will get into trouble, which at this time of year for a bear is not good, as relocating a bear just before hibernation rarely works out well for the bears. Give them a hand by making sure your yard is free of attractants such as crabapples, pumpkins, garbage and pet food.

Elk continue to be seen around town and in open fields, school yards and playing fields. A reminder that male elk are particularly protective of nearby female elk, becoming aggressive towards anything that comes too close. Be aware of the elk, give them lots of space (at least 30m or 3 school bus lengths), keep pets on-leash and calmly leave the area if you see elk or other wildlife. If an elk does charge, prepare to use your bear spray and try to move behind a large object (i.e. car, large tree) and keep it between you and the elk.

Photo by Sandy Lane

Photo by Sandy Lane

It is still hunting season so please be aware of your surroundings and stay clear of dead animals. Hunters should always carry and use bear spray as the first line of defence, even if they are carrying a gun. Bear spray should be carried in an easily accessible location; you need to know how to use it and be prepared to use it.

Current Warnings and Closures

-Bear Closure - Grizzly Creek drainage from Highway 40, including Grizzly Creek Day Use Area, to the ridgeline of Mount Potts and the entire front range (highway side of Opal Ridge) extending north to approximately 1.2 km North of the Fortress Junction Gas Station due to grizzly bears feeding on carcasses.

Here is a list of some Annual Closures in Kananaskis Country.

*Bears are not only found in closure and warning areas. You should always remain alert while walking, hiking, running and biking, and remember that bears can be encountered anytime, anywhere!

A complete list of all warnings and closures are available here for anyone visiting Kananaskis Country and Alberta Parks.

A complete list of all warnings and closures are available here for Banff National Park.

For more information on areas in the Bow Valley frequented by bears at this time of year visit our human-bear conflict summary map.

The information above is based upon a compilation of bear information provided by government agencies and unconfirmed sightings reported by the public over the last week. It is not intended to be used as a real time, complete record of where bears are in the valley.

And Now some Paws-itive News

According to this recent article, the Bow Valley wolf pack is doing well and staying out of trouble! The pack is growing, with at least four pups being born last spring, and they have been seen moving about between Lake Louise, Banff and east towards Canmore.


Important Note:

Please do not use the comment box to report sightings of wildlife.

Report any sightings of a bear, cougar, wolf or any aggressive wildlife in Kananaskis or the Bow Valley to Kananaskis Emergency Services 403.591.7755

For current postings of Bear Warnings, Wildlife Warnings and Closures please visit the following page:
Kananaskis Country - Advisories and Public Safety

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