It's not uncommon to see wildlife roam the trails, woods and even streets in Cochrane. 

The town of Cochrane recently issued a notice to residents after a cougar was spotted in town.

It's pretty rare to walk down a pathway in town and not see a deer.

But this year, the number of reported bear sightings in town is down compared to recent years. 

Cochrane Fish and Wildlife officer Kevin Coutts said that doesn't mean there aren't as many bears around. 

"With respect to bear sightings it can fluctuate year-to-year, it doesn't necessarily directly indicate the population of the animals or where they are currently residing or being seen, it's all about food source. So if there's a good berry crop the animals will typically be in the green spaces and not necessarily all that visible." 

"In other years past we've had a lower natural food supply, and that's when the animals can come into communities unfortunately, and treat our attractants as a food source, be it bird feed, garbage, BBQ's, and compost piles. It varies year-to-year, it doesn't necessarily directly correlate with the population of the animals, it's just what food source they're currently using." 

A reminder to be bear aware both in and outside of town:

  • Carry bear spray (be sure to check the expiration date)
  • Make noise
  • Keep all pets on a leash and close to you at all times.
  • Be aware of your surroundings on walking on trails
  • Be respectful of the space and needs of wildlife 

If you see a bear in town, you're asked to contact the local Cochrane Fish and Wildlife office at 403-932-2388.

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