Living with Urban Wildlife

Moose Red Deer is filled with a wealth of plant and animal diversity. Wildlife add to the quality of life that Albertans enjoy and also act as an important indicator of the health of Alberta's environment. Every day, in every season, Red Deerians share their parks and natural areas with many wildlife species.

As we share our outdoor spaces, remember that Red Deer’s urban wildlife are not pets. Some species live here year-round and others are just passing through, but they are all self-sufficient animals that can thrive on their own. Do not feed any wildlife or birds; it can cause dependency on and aggression toward humans, as well as unnatural feeding patterns and overcrowding.

 

DeerWildlife need space to feel comfortable. Please stay an appropriate distance away from them. Any wild animal may become aggressive if it feels threatened, so ensure pets are on leash and under control at all times. When we respect the needs of wildlife, we can help them to live natural, balanced lives.


Here are a few things you can do to responsibly co-exist with wildlife:

 

Wild animals are healthiest in the wild. Keep pet food inside, properly store garbage and clean-up any fallen fruit in your yard so as to keep opportunistic animals such skunks and coyotes from being attracted to your yard.

FoxKeep pets within your control at all times to reduce the potential for negative wildlife encounters.

As a general rule, do not feed wildlife. Some of the negative impacts associated with feeding wildlife include: unnatural feeding patterns and competition, overcrowding and disease, dependency on humans, aggression towards humans, and damage to landscape.

As it is a common practice to feed birds ensure that you are feeding good quality seed and that you are cleaning in and around feeders regularly. Ensure bird feeders are situated in areas that aren’t accessible to deer and store birdseed in predator proof containers.

Use preventative measures to stop birds from hitting windows. Installing window decals, reducing window reflection with a screen or shade cloth, hanging items near your windows, and/or moving feeders away from windows.

De-clutter your yard and predator proof those areas that could pose potential denning sites for critters, such as under sheds and porches.

Cover your rain barrels to protect wildlife from falling in and to reduce potential mosquito habitat.

Cover all openings such as eaves troughs, chimneys, and vents to keep critters from entering unwanted places.

Use protective wrap on trees to eliminate damage caused by rodents or deer.

Reduce or eliminate yard maintenance chemicals such as synthetic fertilizers and pesticides as these substances can negatively impact wildlife and the ecosystems that they live in. Try organic and earth friendly.


To report a wildlife incident and for general inquiries regarding moose, deer, cougars, coyotes, foxes and other large wildlife please contact:

CoyoteAlberta Fish and Wildlife: 403-340-5142

Call Report a Poacher (RAP) line outside of office hours. The RAP line is available 24 hours a day and is toll-free across North America: 1-800-642-3800

*Fish and Wildlife often refer injured or orphaned animals to the Medicine River Wildlife Centre for rehabilitation.

For general wildlife inquiries please contact:

Medicine River Wildlife Centre (MRWC): 403-728-3467

Kerry Wood Nature Centre: 403-346-2010


Living with Skunks

Skunks are found all over Alberta, in forests and Towns and Cities. This highly adaptable animal is very common in many Cities.

Skunk In order to have a nuisance skunk removed from your property, contact a pest control or wildlife control agency. The best way to deal with nuisance wildlife is to prevent the problem from happening in the first place. Below is information on how to prevent conflicts with skunks that are common in our City.

Wild animals have the same basic needs as humans – food, water and shelter. Sometimes, humans and wild animals come into conflict when animals are trying to meet their basic needs. Often conflicts can be prevented if were willing to make small changes to how we think and act.

Limit Food Sources:

* Never feed skunks.
* Feed pets inside and lock pet doors at night.
* Store garbage inside or in enclosed garbage bins with a lid.
* Keep compost in containers that keep skunks out while allowing for ventilation.
* Clean up any debris, wood piles in yards, and trim long grass and vegetation in yard.

Make Property unwelcoming:

* Secure the perimeter of decks, sheds and crawl spaces.
* Block off potential access points to garage, sheds and any other structures.
* Use flashing lights, motion sensors and noise makers to deter skunks.
* Cover up window wells

If there is a hole already dug under the deck or shed, there is a possibility that a skunk is living there. You can put flour down in front of the hole, wait until the next day and check for prints. If there are no prints going in or out of the hole for several days in a row, you can safely assume that no one is residing there and close up the hole.

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Our Mission

To maintain the safety of the citizens and the animals in our community through education, enforcement and leadership.

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