- Hunting is permitted in Bow Valley Wildland Provincial Park between Sept. 7 and Nov. 30.
- During hunting season you may notice some hunters walking through neighbourhoods to gain access to legal hunting lands in the Bow Valley Wildland Provincial Park. This activity is not illegal. For public safety reasons, bow hunting is prohibited on Larch Island.
- Hunting in the Larch Island area of Canmore is prohibited in the areas shown in red on the map.
- If you see someone hunting in these areas please call Kananaskis Dispatch at 403.591.7755.
The Town of Canmore requested that the Province ban hunting in this area for public safety due to the proximity to homes and significantly high use by a variety of recreation enthusiasts. While the Province did not formally prohibit hunting in this area, a legal review was conducted and the Province acknowledged that as per Section 7a of the Municipal Government Act, the Town has the ability to pass bylaws for the “safety, health, or welfare of people, and the protection of people and property.” The Town of Canmore Bylaw 19-2011, Section 5 was considered sufficient to prohibit discharging firearms within Larch Island.
Where is Larch Island?
Larch Island lies within the Town of Canmore municipal boundary, it is also part of Bow Valley Wildland Provincial Park and Wildlife Management Unit 410, in a designated bow hunting zone.
Why is hunting no longer allowed on Larch Island?
The Town of Canmore and residents have expressed concern regarding bow hunting being allowed in the area of Larch Island; these concerns are mainly due to public safety as the discharge of firearms is in proximity to neighborhoods. Following a legal review of the Town’s Bylaw in February 2018, Alberta Environment and Parks agreed to recognize the Town of Canmore’s bylaw to restrict bow hunting in Larch Island as part of public safety.
How is this change possible if Larch Island is part of the Bow Valley Wildland Provincial Park?
Hunting on Larch Island been identified as public safety issue, and Town of Canmore has the ability to pass bylaws for the “safety, health, or welfare of people, and the protection of people and property” (Municipal Government Act Sect 7a). It was determined that under the Town of Canmore Bylaw 19-2011, the clause 5 prohibition; “No person shall discharge a Firearm within the Town” would be sufficient to prohibit discharge of weapons within the Town of Canmore.
Have the hunting regulations changed?
No. There has not been a change to Wildlife Regulations, rather an acknowledgement of the Town’s right and ability to uphold a bylaw similar for all other communities and municipalities in Alberta.
How are hunters being informed of this change?
Alberta Environment and Parks and the Town of Canmore have worked to cooperatively communicate this message to the hunting community using MyWildAlberta.ca, note in the hunting regulations, and local information before and during hunting season.
If someone is found hunting on Larch Islands who will be responsible for enforcement?
As this is a Town bylaw, this will be enforced by the Town’s Bylaw Services. It is possible that Provincial officers may become involved depending on the situation.
If hunting is illegal in Larch, why are there hunters walking through my neighbourhood in full camo and carrying a bow?
Some hunters walk through Larch neighbourhood and Larch Island to gain access to legal hunting lands in the Bow Valley Wildland Provincial Park. This activity is not illegal.
Who should I call if I see someone hunting on Larch Island?
If you see someone hunting in these areas please call Kananaskis Dispatch at 403.591.7755 and they will determine who to dispatch to conduct an investigation. Depending on the circumstance, you may be asked to call Bylaw Services at 403.678.4244.
Where can I get more information?