Living with wildlife

Living with Wildlife

Living and recreating in Utah means that we share our environment with wildlife. How would you respond if you encountered a bear while hiking, or if you had a moose eating your bushes? Would you be surprised to see a cougar in the area?

Here are some tips to safely share Utah with our unique wildlife.

  • Never approach or try to touch wildlife.
  • Never feed wildlife.
  • Remove attractants from your property, including pet food, water sources, bird feeders and fallen fruit.
  • Always hike, jog or bike with a companion; make noise to alert wildlife of your presence.
  • Never leave children or pets unattended.
  • Keep dogs leashed, especially when on trails.
  • Secure trash in a locked receptacle.
  • Contain pets and livestock at night.
  • Trim vegetation around your property, and close off crawl spaces to reduce hiding places.
  • Keep a clean, odor free campsite.
  • Educate your neighbors and family about wildlife conflict prevention.

Knowing some basic facts about wildlife and taking a few simple steps can help you prevent many common wildlife-related problems.

Utah is home to an abundance of wildlife. It can be exciting to see wildlife, but remember to observe from a safe distance. If you want to spot animals without disturbing them, you could consider setting up trail cameras to get a proper insight into animals in their natural habitat. Always give the animal a clear escape route. Do not crowd the animal; doing so could make the animal stressed and unpredictable.

Before calling authorities, read the appropriate materials available on the Be Aware page to learn of ways you can reduce the potential for conflicts with wildlife.

Know when to call authorities: If you see an animal you don’t necessarily need to call authorities. Animals may be active where they are normally found.

You should call: If the animal is acting threatening, aggressive, destroying property, occupying an area in a human development (i.e under a porch) or otherwise acting odd.

Here are numbers to call if a wildlife conflict poses immediate danger for the animal or people in the area.

Aggressive Wildlife

If you have an encounter with an aggressive animal, please alert the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources office near you or call 911.
  • Cedar City (435) 865-6100
  • Ogden (801) 476-2740
  • Price (435) 613-3700
  • Salt Lake City (801) 538-4700
  • Springville (801) 491-5678
  • Vernal (435) 781-9453
After hours or on weekends call your local police department or county sheriff’s office who can contact a conservation officer to handle the situation.

ClickNFixReport wildlife carcass impeding traffic:

UDOT traffic information a wildlife carcass is causing a dangerous situation call 911 or Utah Highway Patrol dispatch at 801-887-3800.

UDOT created a new app Click-n-Fix where people can report problems on the road including wildlife carcasses not affecting traffic.
Note: UDOT does not have 24/7 coverage for Click ‘n Fix.

Click here to report poaching incidents to the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources.

Injured, Orphaned or Sick Wildlife

People often encounter what they perceive to be injured, orphaned or sick wildlife. While a truly sick or injured animal may benefit by being turned over to a licensed wildlife rehabilitator, people should leave wildlife undisturbed.

Every spring and summer, well-intentioned people attempt to save young wildlife they believe to be abandoned when usually the mother is nearby. It is normal for many species to leave their young in a nest, thicket or rocky outcrop to keep them hidden from predators or to keep them safe while they search for food. If you disturb a young animal or nesting bird, leave the area. The presence of people near the young will prevent the parent from returning. It is best to watch wildlife from a safe distance and leave wildlife wild.

Most wildlife in Utah is protected by law and cannot be taken from the wild and possessed. Only when an animal is obviously injured, sick or orphaned is there reason to contact a licensed wildlife rehabilitator. Above all, never consider wild animals as possible pets.

There are a number of wildlife rehabilitators in Utah licensed by the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources (UDWR). Rehabiliators are trained and have extensive experience in caring for wild animals. The goal of rehabilitation is to release these animals back into the wild once they recover. Wildlife rehabilitators are independent operators licensed by the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources, but are not affiliated with the division. The UDWR does not necessarily endorse any of these rehabilitators, but they do oversee their operations for compliance with wildlife rehabilitation laws and requirements. As independent operators, rehabilitators may accept or decline injured, orphaned or sick animals at their discretion.

  • Click here for a list of licensed wildlife rehabilitators in Utah.

Please do not call a rehabilitator for raccoons, red foxes, or striped skunks.