Imagine if a road you’ve traveled your entire life suddenly just wasn’t there anymore. Or, if without warning your favorite local market or restaurant just disappeared.

It would be a bit confusing, right? How are you supposed to get to your destination? Where do you go to find food?

That’s essentially what’s happening to a lot of animals who find themselves in the middle of cities or streets. As construction moves into territory that was once a travel corridor or place to find food, animals are suddenly finding themselves in neighborhoods that were once woods. Now to their surprise, it’s all concrete; bustling with humans and machinery, and not at all what they remember.

On this edition of Saturday’s Around the World, we’re taking a look at how communities in the Bow Valley of Alberta, Canada are working on programs to start living harmoniously with wildlife.

Image: American Grizzly in the middle of a paved road showing wildlife in a concrete world.

Source: Kristi // Flickr

The Bow Valley of Alberta, Canada is known as the busiest place in the world where people and grizzly bears coexist peacefully. Their efforts are a great example of how planning our developments around and with wildlife in mind can be beneficial to all of us.

Let’s face it. No one wants to run into a bear on their morning jog.

Realisticly, how can we manage our relationship with the wildlife who live around our communities so that we can all live comfortably? Well, for a look at what these communities are doing, let’s take a moment with this beautiful video directed and produced by Leanne Allison.

Living with Wildlife Everywhere

You may think this doesn’t have to do with you, and that makes sense. After generations of development for human use, it can be difficult to imagine that where you’re standing was once all natural. In fact, it is especially true if you’re in a city, where layers of concrete disguise the natural landscape. If you look closer though, you’ll probably start to see the more subtle ways you are, in fact, still living with wildlife (even if it isn’t a bear in your backyard).

14 minutes

An Adventure in Urban Wildlife

The words "urban wildlife photography" may seem boring, perhaps pictures of squirrels or pigeons. It turns out, the animals that call our cities home have a lot to teach us!

Read More

How do you think our relationship with wildlife would be different if we accommodated the needs of our animal counterparts in our building plans from the beginning? What could we do right now to make our already established cities, towns, and roads, safer for everyone?

If there’s anything to pull from the video above, it’s that it is possible.

Stay open to new possibilities!

  • Sam

“No problem can be solved from the same level of consciousness that created it.”—Albert Einstein 

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  1. “Living With Wildlife.” Vimeo, Leanne Allison, 24 Apr. 2017, Accessed 28 Aug. 2018.

Sam has written and edited hundreds of articles since joining the EWC team in 2016. She writes about topics from the wonders of nature to the organizations changing the world and the simple joys in life! Outside of the EWC office, she’s a part-time printmaker, collector of knick-knacks, and taster of cheeses.