Bear Smart Salmo

BearSmart Salmo is a community initiative to promote voluntary and preventative conservation measures to address the root causes of human-bear conflicts. The ultimate aim is to reduce the risk to  human safety and private property, as well as the number of bears that have to be destroyed each year.

The Village has secured the expertise of the Human-Bear Conflict Working Group and the support, including financial of a host of partners, including Margaux Resources, WildSafe BC, Regional District of Central Kootenay, and the Trans-border Grizzly Bear Program.

The Bear Hazard Assessment and Human Bear Conflict Management Plan for the Village of Salmo was completed in April 2018.  View or download a copy here.

Conservation Officer Jason Hawkes first spoke to Council in 2016 and outlined the steps that the Village could take to reduce human-bear conflict and move towards BearSmart Community Status. The working group was able to raise over $5,000 from these supporters to pay for Salmo’s Bear Hazard Assessment and Human Bear Management Plan which was completed in spring 2018. These documents now help direct future BearSmart Salmo direction and actions.

In 2016, Salmo took a major positive step in that direction by converting all of its municipally-owned garbage cans to bear-resistant covers through an innovative made-in-Salmo solution that was widely publicized in local and provincial media.

BearSmart Tips

Look for these bear attractants on your property:

  • Garbage: the biggest attractant for bears in our communities is garbage. Properly secure your garbage, and keep it indoors until pick-up, or until you can bring it to your local landfill.
  • Compost: use finished compost, leaves, grass or wood chips to cover up fruit or other food waste in your composter. Properly care for your compost by turning it and layering it appropriately to reduce odours.
  • Fruit trees and Grapes: make sure to harvest fruit immediately. Remove all windfall fruit. If you own an orchard, electric fencing is encouraged. Check the phone book for electric fence contractors in our area.
  • Pet food, Birdfeeders and Gardens are all attractants for bears. Keep your pet food securely stored indoors. Bring your birdfeeders in for the summer, supplementing them with natural flowers and birdbaths. Electric fencing is recommended to keep agriculture safe.
  • Barbeques: everyone loves the smell of a good barbeque, bears included! To keep your barbeques safe, make sure that they are properly cleaned, covered and don’t leave utensils out overnight.


A brochure outlining the Bear Smart Community program. Learn the differences and similarities between Black Bears and Grizzly Bears. Take the quiz and see if you know your bears.

A local bear was caught on video testing the Village’s new bear-resistant bins. They passed the test.