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.
Wildlife 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.
Keep 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.
Place Main Content Here For information on dealing with problem wildlife see: Problem Wildlife
Should you encounter wildlife in the city
To report a wildlife incident and for general inquiries regarding moose, deer, cougars, coyotes, foxes and other large wildlife please contact:
Alberta 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 & Wildlife often refer injured or orphaned animals to the Medicine River Wildlife Centre for rehabilitation.
For general wildlife inquiries please contact:
Kerry Wood Nature Centre (KWNC): 403-346-2010
Medicine River Wildlife Centre (MRWC): 403-728-3467
For the removal of dead wild and domestic small animals such as cats, dogs, skunks and porcupines please contact:
Alberta Animal Services: 403-347-2388
Check out the following links for more information on living with wildlife:
Kerry Wood Nature Centre
Medicine River Wildlife Centre
Canadian Wildlife Federation
Alberta Environment and Sustainable Resource Development