Bear Activity Report

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Report any sightings of bears, cougars or wolves
403.591.7755 (Local)

For all public safety
emergencies call 9-1-1

Hyperphagia & Attractant Management

Hyperphagia: What is it, and why is it happening?

Derived from the Greek words πολύς (polys), meaning “many” and φαγῶ (phago), meaning “eating”, hyperphagia is the medical condition of excessive hunger and increased appetite. In humans this can happen as a side effect of certain illnesses or medications, but for many animals it is an integral stage in their annual cycle and is crucial for their  survival.


What it means for bears:

For bears, it’s all about fattening up in preparation for winter torpor (a mild form of hibernation practiced by bears). The world becomes an all-you-can-eat buffet, and in our area grizzly and black bears can consume about 20,000 calories a day from berries,  roots and carrion. Fatter is better, and survival comes down to every natural morsel they can find. They can gain up to four pounds daily as they forage for anything and everything even remotely edible. And for a bear, that really can mean just about anything, including some things that bears should not be eating.


What is means for people:

Bears are going to be out and about scavenging for easy food sources, so for the next couple of months it’s all about our awareness and prevention! Watching out for bears is our responsibility and particularly so this time of year, since bears are concentrating on eating and not on avoiding us. Always practice proper wildlife avoidance on the trails, but don’t just stop there! Aim to keep your backyard attractant free – in other words, try to keep anything a bear might try to eat inside and out of ”paw’s” reach! Berries, fruit trees, BBQ drip pans, birdfeeders, pet food; even things like paint cans and gasoline can attract hungry and curious bears. It’s important to minimize all possible attractants, especially during this time of year.


On the trail:

  • make noise
  • travel in groups
  • watch for signs of animals (tracks, scratchings on trees, scat. etc.)
  • keep pets on-leash
  • learn to use bear spray and carry it with you for chance encounters

At home:

  • clear all attractants (further info linked below)
  • birdfeeders cannot be put up until Nov 1st (as per Canmore’s Animal Control Bylaw); consider using a birdbath instead!
  • supervise children and pets


For more information on how to manage wildlife attractants, please visit these links on our website:



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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