Gateway Gazette

Keep Wildlife Wild: Seasonal speed limit and wildlife etiquette keeps visitors and wildlife safe in Waterton Lakes National Park

To strengthen wildlife and visitor safety, Parks Canada has reduced the speed limit on a portion of the Entrance Road (Highway 5) in Waterton Lakes National Park from 80 km/h to 60 km/h. The 1.75 km section of road extends between the turn-offs for the Golf Course and the Operations Compound. The new speed limit adds only 30 seconds of driving time and is in place until Thanksgiving.
 
In addition to the attached bulletin, Parks Canada invites you to share the important story of wildlife safety with your readers, listeners and viewers to help keep them and the wildlife safe when visiting Waterton Lakes National Park.

Parks Canada is excited to welcome visitors to Waterton Lakes National Park to celebrate Canada 150 and is pleased that visitation to national parks is strong. More and more Canadians and international visitors are experiencing the wonders of our national parks. 

Whether seeing large charismatic animals like elk during the fall rut and bears feeding on fresh berries, or small creatures like butterflies and salamanders, witnessing Waterton Lakes’ spectacular wildlife first-hand is an unforgettable thrill. Parks Canada expects all visitors to be informed and to act appropriately when enjoying the park and the wildlife living here.  Visitor and wildlife safety is of utmost importance to Parks Canada.

Parks Canada needs the support of the public to keep visitors and wildlife safe. We would like to remind visitors that feeding wildlife and disobeying speed limits is illegal. Parks Canada Resource Conservation and Law Enforcement personnel routinely patrol the park to ensure visitors are complying with the Canada National Parks Act. The local RCMP detachment will ensure motorists obey the new speed limit. Parks Canada Law Enforcement and the RCMP have the ability to lay charges if visitors are not in compliance with the Act. 

“Know before you go.”  Visitors should research the park before they visit and exercise appropriate wildlife viewing etiquette when here. Parks Canada expects all park users to follow safe camping and picnicking practices, obey camping and other national park regulations, and keep food and garbage secure at all times. Below are some rules to help visitors respect wildlife’s space and Stay Safe while visiting Waterton Lakes National Park.

Ten tips for visitors to help Respect Wildlife Space and Stay Safe:

1.        NEVER feed the wildlife – feeding wildlife in a National Park is illegal 
2.        Educate yourself about the wildlife in Waterton Lakes National Park.  
3.        Always follow the rules of the road and only stop to view wildlife in designated pullouts – take a picture and move on. 
4.        ALWAYS keep your dog on a leash at all times.  
5.        Hike during the day and make noise – travel in groups.
6.        Do not approach wildlife – try to stay at least 30 m away from large animals and 100m away from bears – so NO SELFIES!
7.        Carry bear spray when hiking and camping and know how to use it.
8.        Keep a clear campsite – store all wildlife attractants (food, garbage, dishes, toiletries) 
9.        Stay alert and aware of your surroundings at all times, while hiking or driving
10.        Check in with Parks Canada on site for safety tips and up to date advisories.

Bear Crossing

Related

Wildlife Safety – https://www.pc.gc.ca/en/pn-np/ab/waterton/securite-safety/faune-wildlife

Photos courtesy of Parks Canada

 

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