With your support, the BC SPCA works to protect and enhance the quality of life for wild animals in British Columbia. Our Wild Animal Rehabilitation Centre (Wild ARC) cares for sick, injured and orphaned wild animals, ensuring they receive the expert care and rehabilitation needed to thrive back home in the wild. We also advocate for wild animals across the province and beyond, working to ensure their protection and welfare.
Throughout the years, many of our wild animal welfare advocacy initiatives have resulted in success through changes in policy or animal protection laws at the federal, provincial and municipal levels.
Major wild animal welfare wins will continue to be added below. None of this would be possible without your passion for animal welfare and desire to take action.
Keep me updated on actions for animals
- Five years after a provincial ban on commercial grizzly bear hunting, the BC SPCA and our supporters took action on a new opportunity to provide feedback on the provincial Grizzly Bear Stewardship Framework expressing support for a continued ban on trophy hunting and the consideration of animal welfare as a priority in the framework.
- Following several tragic incidents involving exotic pets and wild-domestic hybrid animals, the BC SPCA partnered with the Regional District of Nanaimo on an exotic animal resolution (NR50) that was endorsed by the Union of B.C. Municipalities. The provincial government was also asked to prohibit all exotic and wild-domestic hybrid animals under the Controlled Alien Species Regulation.
- Submitted feedback to the provincial government on the Thinhorn Sheep Stewardship Framework in support of protecting thinhorn sheep habitat and populations.
- Provided feedback to the federal government on Amending the Wild Animal and Plant Trade Regulations asking for stronger regulations to restrict elephant ivory and rhinoceros horn trade.
- Provided feedback to the provincial government on the Commercial Bear-viewing Strategy in support of prioritizing animal welfare and protecting bear populations and their ecosystems in bear-viewing activities.
- Submitted a letter to the federal government to encourage action to protect the endangered spotted owl population in B.C.
- After a temporary 18-month Minister’s Order, the Provincial government announced permanent changes prohibiting all public and most commercial uses of second-generation anticoagulant rodenticides (SGARs) in B.C., with limited exemptions, will come into effect on January 21, 2023.
- The City of Vancouver voted unanimously to approve a wildlife feeding bylaw. In 2021, they approved a bylaw to prohibit wildlife feeding in Vancouver Parks, but this new bylaw goes even further to help prevent human-wildlife conflicts.
- Motion presented in Scottish Parliament to adopt the International Consensus Principles for Ethical Wildlife Control for assessing government policies and individual management plans for Scottish wildlife; referenced the AnimalKind accreditation program and standards as an example of putting the “principles into practice”.
- BC SPCA’s Wild ARC celebrates 25th anniversary. During the first full year in operation in 1998, a total of 1,561 patients were admitted to the facility, a number that has steadily grown over the past 25 years. In 2021, Wild ARC admitted a record number of patients – 3,128.
- Bill S-241, Jane Goodall Act, is reintroduced into Canadian parliament. If passed, the Bill will include a phase-out of elephant captivity as well as greater protections for big cats, captive great apes and other wild animals.
- B.C. announces an 18-month ban on second-generation anticoagulant rodenticides (SGARs), to allow government staff to research and review alternatives. BC SPCA experts were consulted as part of the scientific review.
- After actively campaigning over the past two years, in collaboration with the Union of B.C. Indian Chiefs and other groups, the provincial government announced a phase-out of the mink farming industry in B.C.
- Federal petition calls on government to end the international and domestic trade of exotic birds and other wild animals. More than 13,000 Canadians voiced their concern about this issue. Read the government’s official response.
- Thousands of BC SPCA supporters make a pledge to say “no” to rodenticides in their municipality. As a result, more than 20 B.C. municipalities passed motions to ban all rodenticide use on all municipal-owned properties.
- Through a partnership with UBC’s Animal Welfare Program, the BC SPCA’s own Erin Ryan conducted her MSc studying the humaneness, efficacy and non-target species of captive-bolt traps. Dr. Sara Dubois, BC SPCA chief scientific officer and UBC Adjunct Professor, was a co-supervisor for the project.
- Bill S-203, Ending the Captivity of Whales and Dolphins Act, is passed. The Bill bans capture and confinement of whales and dolphins, while also banning breeding of captive cetaceans – a North American first.
- The BC SPCA’s AnimalKind accreditation program wins “Outstanding Organization” Clements Award. The Clements Awards were created by The Fur-Bearers, one of Canada’s oldest wildlife protection organizations, to acknowledge individuals and organizations who have contributed to the welfare of fur-bearing animals.
- Vancouver Park Board unanimously passes motion (PDF) to review its pest control management strategies for wildlife and rodents at the city’s parks and recreational facilities. Park Board staff will also assess if it would be possible to incorporate the BC SPCA’s AnimalKind standards for pest control (PDF) into its contracts.
- Through a partnership with TransLink, the BC SPCA received a Mitacs fellowship to support an MSc student from UBC’s Animal Welfare Program to monitor the effects of a pigeon contraception, Ovocontrol. The pilot project aims to reduce pigeon population and conflicts near SkyTrain stations in a humane way.
- B.C. brings an end to the hunting of grizzly bears throughout the province for resident and non-resident hunters. Earlier in the year, government announced it would end trophy hunting of grizzly bears and stop all hunting of grizzly bears in the Great Bear Rainforest. Further consultation with First Nations, stakeholder groups and the public found 78% of respondents recommended the hunt be stopped entirely, resulting in the outright ban.
- International Consensus Principles for Ethical Wildlife Control, co-authored by BC SPCA and international experts, is published in the Conservation Biology journal.
- In partnership with UBC Animal Welfare Program, BC SPCA co-hosts international conference on Compassionate Conservation.
- In partnership with the UBC Animal Welfare Program and with funding from the Peter Wall Institute for Advanced Studies, BC SPCA co-hosts an international expert forum on wildlife control. The forum results in 20 experts co-authoring the publication International Consensus Principles for Ethical Wildlife Control in 2017.
- BC SPCA co-hosted experts at captive cetacean workshop that led to the creation of the Whale Sanctuary Project.
- The BC SPCA Animal Helpline is created, providing a centralized response for complaints about animal cruelty, injured wildlife and other SPCA queries across B.C.
- BC SPCA successfully lobbies for legislation to protect exotic animals and hold’s B.C.’s first symposium on exotics, bringing government officials, academics and industry together.
- BC SPCA’s Wild ARC opens in Metchosin on Vancouver Island to rehabilitate injured and orphaned wild animals. During the first full year in operation in 1998, a total of 1,561 patients were admitted. Check out Wild ARC’s statistics now.
- BC SPCA helps fund the University of British Columbia’s Animal Welfare Program. This ongoing partnership highlights the Society’s strong commitment to education and research that improves the lives of animals.
We celebrate these major wins for wild animal welfare, but know there is more work to be done. With your support, we are able to continue to advocate for and protect wild animals and their welfare. Thank you for working with us to help improve the lives of wild animals!