Wildlife Management

Live Smart with Urban Wildlife

Coquitlam is home to bears, cougars, coyotes, deer, raccoon, skunks and other wildlife. This is why we find these animals in our neighbourhoods sometimes seeking out garbage for food as well as looking for shelter.

It is important that we avoid encouraging wildlife to our properties by removing attractants, such as garbage, fruit, pet food and bird seed and preventing access to areas that wildlife may use as a den.

We live on nature's doorstep and these animals are part of our environment, but they can become pests and unwanted visitors. Help prevent human-wildlife conflict.


How to Make Your Home and Property Wildlife-Resistant

  • Freeze meat and strong smelling food scraps until collection day.
  • Put food scraps in Green Cart.
  • Secure wildlife clips on Green Carts when it is not collection day.
  • Store Garbage & Green Carts and recycling in an area inaccessible to wildlife.
  • Place Carts and recycling at the curbside after 5:30 a.m. on collection day.
  • Store refrigerators and freezers inside.
  • Keep pet food inside.
  • Pick fruit.
  • Suspend and clean up fallen seed.
  • Practice responsible composting.
  • Keep your Green Cart clean between collection days.
  • Keep barbeques clean.

$500 Fine

Residents can be fined $500 for not managing their waste correctly; It is a resident’s responsibility to make sure their waste doesn’t attract wildlife as outlined in our Solid Waste Management Bylaw and Wildlife & Vector Control Bylaw. (Solid Waste Management Bylaw No. 4679, 2016) (Wildlife and Vector Control Bylaw No. 4284, 2012), Feeding wildlife is illegal in BC (Wildlife Protection Act section 33.1 and 88.1)​

Become a Bear Smart Household

You can promise to follow Coquitlam's 'Bear Smart' guidelines and complete our online pledge and become a 'Bear Smart' household. We will mail you a Bear Smart decal that you can display to show your community that you are a proud Bear Smart household!   

Click here to pledge to be a Bear Smart Family! 

Sign Up for Garbage & Green Cart Collection Reminders

Coquitlam’s waste collection schedule shifts due to statutory holidays so we recommend you use the City’s ReCollect reminder service so you won’t miss collection day or place garbage and green carts out early placing bears in potential danger.

The free app provides single-family households with a personalized curbside collection schedule and electronic reminders for when to put out your green and garbage carts. The app is also useful for receiving messages about service disruptions, wildlife alerts, or reminders about special city services, such as, seasonal yard trimmings collection. ReCollect users can set up smartphone, email, text or Twitter alerts; upload your personalized schedule into your calendar (iCal, Outlook or Google); and go to the webpage to print out a copy.

Download links and an online version of ReCollect can be found on the Collection Calendar webpage.

This app only covers waste services provided by the City. Recycle BC, which provides Coquitlam’s recycling service, offers a similar notification app and can be accessed through a link on that same webpage. Multi-family complexes, which pay for and manage their own waste services, should contact their property manager or strata for collection information.

Educational & Fun Videos!

Keep Your Distance

Parks Canada & Metro Vancouver Regional Parks recommend 100m or more as a safe distance to stay away from bears.  

You may be habituating bears to humans by allowing them to be comfortable on your property or coming too close to try and capture a photo. Respect the bears and give them their space. Habituation starts slowly - through constant, repeated exposure to people, it can rapidly progress until bears become increasingly bold and fearless of people, which can be dangerous for both them and people.

If you have a close encounter with a bear remain calm, speak calmly to the bear and back away slowly. Once in the safety of your home use an air horn or bang pots and pans together to teach the bear that it is not welcome on your territory.

Help keep your neighbourhood and the bears safe by securing all attractants including garbage, food scraps, bird seed, compost and fruit.

If You Encounter  Wildlife

  • Stop and remain calm. Often the wildlife is just passing through and will simply move on if it finds no food source.
  • Do not scream or run.
  • Make yourself look big.
  • Talk in a low and calm voice while backing away slowly.
  • Bring pets and children into the house.
  • When inside, you may use an air horn or loud noise to scare away the animal and let it know it’s not welcome in your yard.

To report wildlife that is aggressive or causing property damage, call the Conservation Officer Service at 1-877-952-7277.

Please protect our wildlife by ensuring your home and property are wildlife resistant.

Injured or Abused Animals?

Click ​HERE for information on injured animals, animal cruelty or abuse.​

If you observe wildlife in distress:

  • Injured birds and and small mammals (i.e. skunks, raccoons, bats)
  • Injured mammals and baby mammals (i.e. bears, deer, skunks, raccoons)
  • Injured raptors/birds of prey (i.e. owls, eagles, falcons, hawks)

Book a Classroom ​or Public Presentation!

Urban wildlife presentations can be booked by contacting the Urban Wildlife Coordinator at urbanwildlife@coquitlam.ca. Presentations cover the species of wildlife in Coquitlam, wildlife behavior, attractants, safety, and issues in Coquitlam. They are usually 45 minutes - 1 hour long and are available for K - 12 students, ESL groups, summer camps and other groups.

Wildlife Alert Reporting Program

You can keep up-to-date with the latest information about bear sightings in your neighbourhood with the Wildlife Alert Reporting Program map at the BC Conservation Foundation website. 

Bear CorridorsWildlife Corridors

The City of Coquitlam has a commitment to provide/protect corridors for wildlife when there are development plans near sensitive areas for wildlife habitat. Green corridors are considered as part of the City’s development review  process, its bylaws, policies and guidelines.

Development considers the protection of wildlife and green corridors ​by utilizing the minimum setbacks established by our municipal bylaws, including: the Urban Design ​and Development Permit Areas (CWOCP, Part 4)​; the  Zoning Bylaw as it applies to the Riparian Area Regulation, fencing heights, trail plans, and other various policies with respect to watercourse crossings; Neighbourhood Plans; and reviews of development application plans involving Environmentally Sensitive Areas when reviewed by staff at the Environmental Review Committee. 

Our CWOCP includes Chapter 3 A Healthy Environment: 

3.3.1 Environmentally Sensitive Areas – Objective 1
The CWOCP refers to “the City’s commitment to protecting the Green Zone, and explore opportunities to preserve additional environmentally sensitive areas which have been identified through a balanced and fair approach.” One of the policies is that the City identifies is:

  • “…park sites, or portions, with significant environmental features in need of protection.”  And “Recognize and respect the need of biodiversity of species, habitat, and ecological functions.”

3.3.1 Environmentally Sensitive Areas – Objective 2
The City is committed “To develop strategies for respecting and enhancing ecological features functions [for] wildlife, habitat, and plant species, in ESAs to be protected. One policy is to “Consider the protection of wildlife corridors, where feasible and desirable.”

3.4 Natural Hazards Management - Objective 2
The City commits “To preserve hazard lands as ESAs that serve as wildlife corridors or contain important habitat, where appropriate.” 
“In areas to be replanted, encourage the use of appropriate native vegetation.Native trees and plants provide habitat for birds and wildlife and are best suited to local soils and climate.”


Below we have a handy Urban Wildlife brochure​ with information about the types of wildlife you may encounter in our community ​along with instructions on the key actions you can take to protect your family and home, as well as the wildlife. Note that there are translated copies as well inTraditional Chinese, Farsi and Korean.​ Also below are some other useful materials and links.

If you are concerned about wildlife or want to report an attractant in your neighbourhood, please contact Engineering Customer Service at 604-927-3500.

To report wildlife that is aggressive or causing property damage, call the Conservation Officer Service at 1-877-952-7277.

Engineering ​& Public Works Customer Service