Wildlife help topics | BC SPCA
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Wildlife help topics

Wildlife

The BC SPCA can’t stop a legally-permitted cull from happening in your community. However, the BC SPCA can intervene if the killing methods are inhumane (by law) or if animals are in distress. If you witness an animal in distress during a cull, call our Provincial Call Centre at 1-855-622-7722. Document evidence by taking videos or photos, but do not trespass on private property or put yourself in danger.

The BC SPCA is opposed to culling animals when there is no evidence to support it, or it can’t be done humanely.  The BC SPCA’s primary approach to wildlife conflicts is coexistence, and changing human behaviour to prevent problems. International and BC SPCA experts agree there are many steps that must first be taken to justify ethical wildlife control.

Deer culls

The BC SPCA recommends using non-lethal strategies to solve human-deer conflict. Communities should aim to prevent conflict by educating residents about co-existing with urban deer. Culling is an inefficient, short-term solution and should not be a default practice.

Read our position statement on urban deer.

Download our urban deer pamphlet (PDF).

Wild deer on dried grass buck and young deer looking at each other
Photo credit: Karen Guy

Geese and other bird culls

The BC SPCA recommends hazing and environmental modifications to prevent conflicts with birds, as well as providing education that discourages feeding by the public. When appropriate, fertility control is a non-lethal way to limit reproduction, though permits are generally required.

Read our best practice sheets for:

Group of wild canada geese with a parent and four cute goslings by water on the grass
Photo credit: Heather Marie Toews

Wolf culls

Wolf culls in B.C. and Alberta have drawn significant criticism. Experts criticize the inhumane methods and lack of evidence that killing wolves will save caribou or other species. Culling can break up wolf pack structures and create an imbalance with other species in the area. Even with skilled shooters, shooting wolves from helicopters can cause stress and death may not be quick and painless.

Read our position statement on predator control.

Photo by Grayson Pettigrew
Photo by Tony Pace