On August 8, 2022, the Airdrie RCMP advised the public that there had been a police presence in the Sagewood Community as there a bear was spotted in the neighbourhood. A short while after, Fish and Wildlife successfully tranquillized the bear and relocated it.

Officer Mark Rayment who is the District Fish and Wildlife officer for the Calgary area said that this particular bear was relocated to an area approximately 100 kilometres Northwest of Calgary.

"We don't monitor location or whereabouts or proactively track them [the animals] after they're released. We do ear tag them in the event that they are involved in another conflict situation in the future," he added.

Officer Rayment also clarified that the bear, though perhaps may have looked like a cub, was in fact a juvenile, meaning that it probably had left its mother's care a year or so ago. He said that bears within the age range of two years old are the most likely to come into conflict with humans. Though he did not have concrete numbers, he said that speaking from anecdotal observations, within the past year, there has been an increase in wildlife coming into more frequent contact with humans.

"I think we have dealt with about 11 bears in urban areas in the Calgary District, which includes the city of Airdrie this past year," he said.

Officer Rayment said that the biggest issue that spurs wildlife to come into contact with humans is food, or food attract.

"When we're talking about food attract, we're talking about any sort of unnatural food source that may offer an easy meal to wildlife, especially in communities that border the outskirts of these urban areas; communities along the northwest and south parts of the city of Calgary and some of the underlying neighbourhoods in Airdrie as well,' he said.

Securing garbage collection and making sure that one doesn't put them out until as close to pick-up time as possible, as well as managing odours from food and composting bins can, and taking down bird feeders in the spring and fall can help to keep wildlife away from human food sources.

"Once they do get into unnatural food; we call these types of bears - food-conditioned bears, that's when they do start to pose a serious public safety risk. They'll have this behaviour learned and then they'll intentionally seek out people for their food sources in the future."

No injuries were associated with the Airdrie bear sighting this past summer. 

Send your news tips, story ideas, pictures, and videos to news@discoverairdrie.com