Grizzly bears can be shot in Alberta only if people feel their lives or other people’s lives are in danger. | File photo

Alberta grizzly bear shooting sparks debate on safety

High Prairie, Alta. — The shooting of a grizzly bear preying on cattle in the Peace district has re-ignited the debate over how far ranchers can go to protect themselves and their livestock. Leroy Scott Peats of the Whitemud Provincial Grazing Reserve near Dixonville, Alta., has been charged for allegedly shooting a female grizzly and […] Read more

Daniel Badiou’s self-propelled chicken coop gives birds access to grass in one plot and then 
automatically drives forward to the next plot. The coop is powered by electricity with a solar panel and battery providing back-up power.  |  Daniel Badiou photo

Chickens safe in mobile home

BRANDON — Consumers are willing to pay a price premium for chickens grazed on grass. However, keeping those birds well watered, well fed and safe from predators is an ongoing challenge. It’s a challenge that Daniel Badiou has taken up with enthusiasm. Badiou, who helps run the family’s dairy farm near Sommerset, Man., graduated with […] Read more

South Kamloops rancher Gillian Watt says her llama and Akbash guard dog help protect her sheep from coyotes.  |  Tom Walker photo

B.C. Livestock Protection Program praised

KAMLOOPS, B.C. — The Livestock Protection Program that the British Columbia Cattlemen’s Association launched last spring has the support of the province’s ranchers. “It’s a good program and a necessity,” said Ian Mitchell, who ranches in the North Thompson area. “I don’t remember my parents talking about wolf problems around the kitchen table 30 years […] Read more

The cull is a result of a high number of predation claims from livestock producers in the north. | File photo

Sask. widens hunting area to push wolves out

Saskatchewan is expanding its wolf hunt to help reduce livestock predation near the provincial forest. Environment Minister Scott Moe said the plan isn’t to cull the wolves. Instead, it’s to put pressure on them to stay in the forest and away from livestock. Only three wolves were killed last year. The expanded wolf hunt follows […] Read more

The Waldron Ranch discovered that the benefits of cell grazing outweighed the cost involved in fencing and labour in moving cattle.  |  Barb Glen photo

Cell grazing provides spin-off benefits

LUNDBRECK, Alta. — When a ranch is 65,000 acres in size, it can’t be managed at the cellular level. But managing part of it in grazing cells is another matter. On the Waldron Ranch, cell grazing was born out of necessity to limit wolf predation of the cattle herd. Ranch manager Mike Roberts said the […] Read more

Gary Fletcher, manager of a community pasture near Roblin, Man., says wolves in the province are moving out of their traditional range.  |  Robert Arnason photo

Large herds in remote areas raise predation risk

Bale grazing, corn grazing and off-site watering have replaced traditional systems on many livestock farms in Western Canada over the last decade. The practices save farmers time and money, but an Agriculture Canada biologist says the new approaches have a downside. “A lot of the (production) innovation has … allowed producers to have larger herds […] Read more

Wolves living along the Rocky Mountain eastern slopes rely on cattle for 45 percent of their prey during the grazing season, recent research has shown.  |  Caninest\ photo

Wolf meal habits change with grazing season

Customers return to restaurants where they liked the food. However, repeat visits are not exactly welcome when the customers are wolves and the food is the livestock bone yard. “If you follow a wolf pack, they will systematically go from bone yard to bone yard to bone yard,” said University of Alberta biological sciences researcher […] Read more

Southwestern Alberta rancher Tony Bruder says the film will help  the public understand the conflict between stewardship and seeing livestock killed by grizzly bears and wolves.  | File photo

Film shows challenges of living with grizzlies

Jennifer Jenkins has had her calving season turned upside down — by a grizzly bear. The big carnivore killed two calves in a 10-day period recently and maimed another that may not survive. Because it appeared the bear intended to stick around for future meals, Jenkins moved every cow on her Alberta ranch near Waterton […] Read more

Researchers have found that allowing cattle and sheep to bond and roam in the same groups reduces coyote attacks on sheep.  |  File photo

Sheep-cattle bond creates united front

Predator losses reduced | Researchers examine how to bond cattle and sheep into flerds to keep coyotes at bay

THORSBY, Alta. — Sheep losses from coyotes were eliminated on research station rangeland when cattle and sheep were bonded together into a flerd, says an American researcher. Just like in an old western movie where the settlers circled the wagons and the young and vulnerable huddled in the middle for protection, the cows created a […] Read more

Arlette Seib’s dogs stand guard on her farm near Watrous, Sask.  |  Arlette Seib photo

Guard dogs are sheep’s best friend

Choose your breed | Dogs should be selected with terrain, type of livestock in mind

An injured or dead animal in the pasture is one of the worst things livestock producers can find. The culprit — a coyote, wolf or bear — is long gone and the damage is done. However, there is help in the form of another animal with lots of fur and an aggressive bark. Guard dogs […] Read more