These highly intelligent and dexterous critters can get into things you never thought possible! 
Check grain storage bags for signs of raccoon damage. Read more ....


Strychnine for Control of Richardson Ground Squirrels

The registration for 2% Liquid Strychnine Concentrate has been renewed and the ASB will distribute it to qualified farmers in the County.  EFFECTIVE MARCH 2017, we have new procedures for purchasing Strychnine





The County of Vermilion River may remove beaver dams if the integrity of a road bed is threatened, if crop or hay lands are affected or if other undesirable flooding is occurring.

A fee of $100 will be assessed if only one landowner benefits from the removal of the dam.

For further information on how to reduce damage caused by beavers, please click on the following link (Alberta Agriculture and Rural Development)



The County occasionally receives complaints regarding domestic and feral dogs harassing and sometimes killing livestock. Recently several head of livestock were killed by stray dogs in the north-eastern part of the County, causing a significant economic loss to the owners of the cattle. These animals suffered significantly before their deaths. To prevent further loss of life and morbidity, the County’s pest control officers in conjunction with area farmers focused on removing and destroying the offending dogs, as it was not possible to determine who owned the dogs.

Livestock owners are empowered under provincial law to destroy any dogs that threaten their herd.

While recognizing landowners’ rights to destroy dogs under these circumstances, the County strongly encourages all rural residents to work together to resolve any issues so that such extreme measures are not necessary.

If you are a landowner and feel it may be necessary to kill a dog to protect your livestock, please contact the dog’s owners and attempt to resolve the issue. If you must destroy a dog, please contact the local RCMP before doing so and then again after the animal has been destroyed.

Outside of villages and hamlets, dogs are allowed to be at large providing they stay on their owner’s property. If dogs leave their owner’s property the dogs could be at risk.

The legislation that authorizes farmers to kill stray dogs is the Stray Animals Act. To view this legislation, please click on the following link to go the Queen’s Printers website.


With few natural enemies, magpies can become overpopulated, injure young livestock and spread livestock diseases.

The County has a limited number of traps that are available for loan. These traps are much in demand and there may be a waiting period in order to borrow one.  Land owners can also build their own using the link as a reference.
Landowners will need to euthanize any magpies caught in the traps.$department/deptdocs.nsf/all/agdex3496


Porcupines have their place in nature but can cause serious damage to shelterbelts and other desirable trees and shrubs. The County does not have the necessary equipment to live trap and relocate porcupines. Please call the office for information or click on the link below.$department/deptdocs.nsf/all/agdex3470


Since 1950, Alberta Agriculture has supervised and co-ordinated a rural-based Norway rat (Rattus norvegicus) control program that has essentially kept the province rat-free. Success is achieved by eliminating invading rats within a control zone 600 km long and 30 km wide along the eastern border of the province. A systematic detection and eradication system is used throughout the zone to keep rat infestations to a minimum. Strong public support and citizen participation were developed through public education and a sound awareness effort. Although rat infestations within the interior are minor, a rat response plan is in place to deal with a large or difficult case. Government preparedness, legislation, climate, geography, effective rat baits and close co-operation between provincial and municipal governments have contributed to program success.

Alberta Agriculture, Food and Rural Development provides resource support, complete funding and overall administration and superintendence of the rat control program. Rat control field operations are the responsibility of the municipalities within the province's rat control zone. Although rats continue to invade Alberta, reported rat infestations continue to decline.  Did you know rats…

  • Do not hibernate
  • Reproduce as early as 6 to 8 weeks of age
  • Can have 12 babies per litter
  • Can have 10 litters per year
  • Can vertically climb several stories
  • Can fall 8 meters without sustaining injury

Click on the link below for more information:$department/deptdocs.nsf/all/agdex816


The County of Vermilion River will lend a trap to rate payers who have skunk issues. There may be a waiting list for traps depending on demand.
There is no place to release skunks into the wild in the county where they will not become a problem to some other land owner. Therefore, all skunks that are captured in traps are euthanized.
Due to time constraints, County staff are not usually available to perform the euthanizing and the landowner is requested to carry out this task.
Although there has never been a case reported in the County of Vermilion River, the rabies virus may be present in skunks – use rubber gloves when handling traps and dead skunks.
The Biology and Control of SkunksAlberta Agriculture
Dealing With Problems - Tips for dealing with skunks and other nuisance wildlife – Hinterland Who’s Who


Minimum Containment Standards for Alberta Wild Boar Farms
- please click here

Feral Boar Research - the University of Saskatchewan is monitoring Feral Boars: 
Program Poster
Program Info Sheet


Wild Boar Project

The County of Vermilion River is part of the Alberta Department of Agriculture and Rural Development Wild Boar Program.  Under this program, individuals are eligible to receive $50 per pair of wild boar ears.

To make an application, a person must:

  • Present the wild boar ears to the Agriculture Service Board (ASB).  The program will only accept pairs of ears.  Single ears, or partial ears are not eligible;
  • Give all mandatory submission information;
  • Submit a signed declaration.

Individuals are not eligible for the program if the animal was killed in a manner that contravened any laws (eg. bylaws, trespass, firearms, animal welfare).

For more information contact Howie Bjorge, Director of Agriculture at (780) 846-2244 or

Documents: (links to external document management site)

Wild Boar Pilot Project Agreement
Wild Boar Pilot Project Schedule A - Declaration of Applicant
Wild Boar Pilot Project Schedule B - Submission Information