- October 16th, 2015 How Torontonians can co-exist with their furry neighbours, even raccoons
- October 16th, 2015 How Torontonians can co-exist with raccoons
- July 22nd, 2015 Durham Region - Humane ways to avoid conflict with wildlife in Durham
- July 15th, 2015 Yahoo News - City dwellers must co-exist with urban wildlife, experts say
- Jun 11th, 2015 City News - Owl rescued from being stuck in soccer net
- May 14th, 2015 Toronto Star - Humans not raccoons are the problem
- April 6th, 2015 CTV - Tips for keeping your home critter free
- April 6th, 2015 Global News - Toronto considering raccoon-resistant green bins
- April 6th, 2015 Newstalk 1010 - Raccoon-proof green bins & expanded blue bins on this week's city agenda
- September 20th, 2014 Inside Toronto - Company helps Scarborough senior solve raccoon problem at no cost
- August 18th, 2014 National Post - Rob Ford makes a new enemy, says he has been in 'standoffs' with fearless raccoons outside his home
- September 26, 2013 PCT Magazine - Humane Urban Wildlife Management: What Does it Really Mean?
- July 25th, 2013 The Star - Racoons: Everything you always wanted to know about them but were too busy cleaning up their mess to ask
- March 8th, 2013 The Star - Trapped Cat Survives Between Floor and Ceiling For 11 Days
- Winter 2012 Condominium Manager Magazine - Protecting Your Green Image
- December 12th, 2011 AAA Gates' Wildlife Control - Choose a Wildlife Control Company Carefully
- October 1st, 2011 The National Post - Toronto's flourishing fauna
- September 23rd, 2011 The Toronto Star - Wildlife vs. the city: Can't we get along?
- August 21st, 2011 AAA Gates' Wildlife Control - Nuisance Wildlife and Municipal Animal Services
- June 8th, 2011 The Grid - All creatures great and small
- May 20, 2011 Toronto Sun - Three albino baby raccoons found
- February 10th, 2011 AAA Gates' Wildlife Control - The Reprecussions of Live Trapping Wildlife
- November 17th, 2010 Eye Weekly - Pop-up possums! Everything you need to know about Toronto's newest immigrants
- September 28th, 2010 AAA Gates' Wildlife Control - Humane Bat Removal
- October 2010 Green Condos - A Guide for Choosing an Ethical and Humane Wildlife Control Company
- Summer 2010 Toronto Life Magazine - Gates' Wildlife Control Voted Best in the City
- July 2nd, 2010 Globe and Mail - The 'Wild West' of wildlife control
- June 15th, 2010 ACMO Tech - Solving Wildlife Problems: Challenges Confronting Property Managers
- May 6th, 2010 The Record - Raccoon in attic led to Kitchener blaze
- February 2nd, 2010 The Toronto Star - City's Coyotes Popping Up Again
- January 14th, 2010 Newmarket Era - Lone coyote roaming around Glenway club
- May 11th, 2009 City TV News - Wildlife Crew Finds Rare Albino Raccoon At Contruction Site
- March 30th, 2009 City TV News - Creature Comforts How To Stop Wildlife From Invading Your Property
- February 24th, 2009 The Toronto Star - Coyote attacks prompt city to take action
- April 24th, 2008 City TV News - Raccoon Fatally Injured After Leg Caught In Barbaric Trap
- August 20th, 2007 City TV News - Raccoon Sways Lamp Post, Crowd
Wildlife vs. the city: Can't we get along?
The Toronto StarBy Michael Woods
If there's a raccoon on your property and you want it to leave, there are better methods than hitting it with a shovel.
That was one of the messages coming out of an inaugural Toronto conference devoted to improving the way urban dwellers interact with wildlife.
"People try inhumane solutions - using rat traps for squirrels, poisons for raccoons. There are always humane alternatives," said Brad Gates, a speaker at the conference and owner of Scarborough's AAA Gates' Wildlife Management.
The problem is that most people, even city workers, aren't trained in how to properly deal with wild animals, said conference spokesperson Adrian Nelson.
Some resort to drastic measures, such as the Toronto man arrested in June and charged with beating a baby raccoon with a shovel. That, along with an increase of coyote attacks on farm animals in Ontario, has made wildlife interaction a "hot news item" in Toronto, Nelson said.
Rather than simply killing the animals, long-term solutions, particularly eliminating their easy access to food, are more effective.
Toronto Animal Services doesn't keep track of human-wildlife confrontations. But Gates estimates Toronto's raccoon population has spiked 25 per cent since the green bin program was introduced in 2002.
"It's like one-stop shopping for a raccoon to open up that bin. It would normally take a week to forage and find that much food."
The conference, held at the Metropolitan Hotel, was organized by the Association for the Protection of Fur-Bearing Animals, a Vancouver-based non-profit group. Calls to the organization from across the country are up 20 per cent, including a flood of calls regarding beavers and coyotes. The conference was organized to explore solutions beyond short-term fixes such as trapping.
Gates said he's been doing more work involving beavers of late, so he was also present to learn from beaver experts such as Colorado's Sherri Tippie.
Tippie is a hairdresser by day but has moonlighted as a beaver relocator since 1985. She claims to have "the best record of anybody in the United States, if not the world." She finds landowners and government agencies that need the beavers for habitat restoration.
Tippie was on hand to explain ways to prevent beaver-related flooding - such as a pipe system or water-flow device - rather than the oft-preferred method of simply shooting them.
"These animals are literally a keystone species to an aquatic ecosystem. And when you shoot them, they always return," she said.
The roughly 100 attendees from across North America ranged from trappers and fur industry workers to wildlife rehabilitation workers and other wildlife advocates. Discussion topics ranged from how to lobby politicians on the treatment of wildlife to dealing with coyotes properly.