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Wildlife Viewing Nature & Wildlife

Alberta’s five national parks and more than 250 provincial parks protect nearly 600 species of wildlife. On any given road trip or hike – even a stroll through a mountain town – expect to see something wild. You might even spy a local all-star: moose, bison, elk, grizzlies and black bears, bighorn sheep and mountain goats. • Good to know: You’re extra lucky if you spot an elusive wolf, cougar, lynx, bobcat or wolverine. • Pro tip: Golden eagles search for prey in the northern forests and on the prairies. Flocks of trumpeter swans, an at-risk species, can be spotted in spring, especially on water in the Grande Prairie area. 

It’s a brisk, cloudy morning in February in a remote valley on the eastern edge of Banff National Park. Five modified shipping containers sit on the ground, vibrating. Inside are groups of plains bison—three or four to a container, not quite shoulder to shoulder, 16 animals in all. The bison each have a numbered tag attached to one ear, a special collar around their necks, and lengths of rubber hose duct-taped to their horns to protect one another from accidental gougings.

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Kananaskis Country | Collen Gara

Wildlife Viewing Spots

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Ellis Bird Farm

Lacombe, Alberta
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Located in the heart of central Alberta, Ellis Bird Farm is both a working farm as well as a non-profit organization dedicated to the conservation of Mountain Bluebirds, Tree Swallows and other native cavity-nesting birds. Drop-in visitors and tour groups are welcome at Ellis Bird Farm.

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John Janzen Nature Centre

Edmonton, Alberta
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A nature adventure awaits you in the heart of Edmonton's River Valley. The whole family will love the programs, events and interactive exhibits on display at the John Janzen Nature Centre. At the centre's indoor Teglar Discovery Zone kids up to 10 years of age can climb the birch trees, hang out in the honeycomb bee hive and learn about nature and wildlife through play.

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Calgary Zoo

Calgary, Alberta
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The Calgary Zoo is operated by the Calgary Zoological Society, an independent not-for-profit organization that is Alberta’s oldest registered charity and is internationally recognized as one of the top zoos in the world for conservation research. It is home to almost 800 animals, excluding individual fish and insects, and 130 different species. The 120-acre zoo is organized by distinct zones: Destination Africa, Canadian Wilds, Penguin Plunge, Dorothy Harvie Botanical Gardens and ENMAX Conservatory, Eurasia, and Prehistoric Park. The zoo averages 1.3 million visitors each year and is open to the public every day except for Christmas Day.

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Tours

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Trail Riders of the Canadian Rockies

Waterton Lakes, Alberta
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The Trail Riders of the Canadian Rockies is an experienced, non-profit registered society celebrating 95 years of taking people from all over the world into the back country of Canada's Rocky Mountains. Honouring Alberta's distinctive western cowboy culture, the adventure trips include excellent teepee and tent accommodations, (with raised cots) four-star food, professional guides and live entertainment in a rustic wilderness camp which is complete with hot washing water and a hot outdoor shower. Over 50% of guests are over the age of 50, and 75% are female, many returning for as many as ten, twenty, and a few over thirty years! Riding experience ranges from beginners to the experienced and everyone’s abilities can be accommodated. Families are common on rides, including grandparents with their grandkids. Experience backcountry vistas rarely seen and wildlife only seen in the backcountry. "Canada's Original Trail Ride".....since 1923.

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SunDog Tour Co.

Jasper, Alberta
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Providing memorable sightseeing, activity and transportation services. From daily sightseeing excursions, to group tours, to airport shuttles, to coach touring and conference services, our staff of vacation planners specialize in making your time in the mountains unforgettable.

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Wild Current Outfitters Rafting

Jasper, Alberta
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The Snake Indian Valley trip offers guests a rare experience in a breathtaking region of the Park that few locals and even fewer tourists have ventured. You’ll raft down a roaring, clear river, hike through pine forests, meadows and see wildlife such as bighorn sheep, mountain goats, moose, elk, and bears. Horses transport all gear and baggage so you can travel lightly, knowing that at the end of the day a comfortable camp, great meal and maybe even a cold beer await you. Leave the guiding to us and we promise to make this trip of a lifetime.

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