Pest Control

Click here for information on Provincial regulations regarding PESTS & NUISANCE animals


RICHARDSON GROUND SQUIRREL 2021 Richardson’s Ground Squirrel Strychnine Program


Strychnine update – August 17, 2021

The County of Vermilion River is sold out of 2% liquid strychnine for ground squirrel control.  Until Health Canada changes the regulations, we will not be receiving any more strychnine in the future.


Health Canada has cancelled the registration of 2% liquid strychnine used to control Richardson’s Ground Squirrels, with final production ending on March 4, 2021, sales ending March 4, 2022 and the product fully banned from use on March 4, 2023. The County of Vermilion River is sold out of strychnine.


Options to help control gophers (Richardson’s ground squirrel and Northern pocket gophers):

  • Consider raptor platforms, nesting boxes, perches, dense groundcover along fences and field margins, and other wildlife habitat to encourage natural predation
  • Reduce preferred gopher habitat by maintaining healthy pastures and using rotational grazing
  • Rozol is registered for control of ground squirrels and pocket gophers in rangelands, crop, and non-crop areas. Rozol is available from Agricultural Product Retailers.
  • Rocon is a poison-free rodenticide registered for control of gophers

More information on gopher control is available from Alberta Agriculture and Forestry. 




On March 4, 2020, Health Canada’s Pest Management Regulatory Agency (PMRA) published the final re-evaluation decision on strychnine used to control Richardson’s ground squirrels (RVD2020-06).

Under the authority of the Pest Control Products Act, Health Canada is cancelling the registration of strychnine products used to control Richardson’s ground squirrels. Environmental risks associated with the use of strychnine to control Richardson’s ground squirrels was deemed not acceptable.

The registration of 2% Liquid Strychnine Concentrate will expire after March 4, 2023 – the last day of permitted use. Continued possession and/or use of the product after this date is a violation of the Pest Control Products Act. For more information on the regulation of pesticides, you are encouraged to contact PMRA by email at or by phone at 1-800-267-6315.


Important Dates from Health Canada (PMRA):


2% Liquid Strychnine Concentrate for Richardson’s Ground Squirrel control (Registration No. 30433 PCP Act) is cancelled and phased out with timelines as follows:

  • Last date of sale by Registrant (Manufacturer) is March 4, 2021
  • Last date of sale by Retailer is March 4, 2022
  • Last date of permitted use is March 4, 2023


For more information, contact Cathie Erichsen Arychuk, Director of Agriculture and Environment at 780-808-6163 or


BEAVERS & DAMS CVR may remove beaver dams to protect municipal infrastructure.

For dam removal on private lands, fees will apply. 

See here for trappers you may contact.

Contact the office if you have beaver concerns.


CVR participates in the Alberta Rat Control program as we strive to maintain Alberta's "Rat Free" status.  Annually, we inspect over 1500 sites along the AB/SK border looking for rat activity. Pest Control Officers (PCO'S) will inspect the first six miles west of the border in Spring and Fall. If you think you have have a rat and you live outside of Range 1, please call us at 780-846-2244 to schedule an inspection.


Our PCO’ s are required under Alberta’s Agricultural Pests Act to check any areas that could provide potential Norway rat habitat within the Rat Control Zone. These inspections, and management of any rats that they find, are the reason that Alberta is still Rat-Free. Pest Control Officers may enter into your yard, be looking around farm buildings, bale yards, feed bins or grain storage. They may also check grain bags and bale stacks in fields.


PCO's will always be happy to stop and talk to you about what they are looking for and what they are finding, so if they don ’t find you first, feel free to stop and talk. The Ag department wants to work with ratepayers – if you would like us to email or call before we come out for an inspection, please let us know that, and the best way to contact you. 

Did you know that 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

More information on the provincial program.
SKUNKS A limited number of skunk traps are available to landowners.  A deposit may be required for using a trap. Arrangements must be made in advance with the AG team. 
The Biology and Control of Skunks – Alberta Agriculture
RACCOONS  A limited number of Raccoon Traps are available to landowners. Trapped Racoons are not handled by CVR pest control officers Monitor your grain storage bags for signs of raccoon damage 
MAGPIES  Are not handled by CVR pest control officers Plan to make your own trap (landowners will need to appropriately euthanize magpies)

PORCUPINES  Are not handled by CVR pest control officers   More information on porcupines
DOGS & LIVESTOCK  Outside villages, subdivisions, and hamlets, dogs are allowed to be at large providing they stay on owners' property.  If dogs leave owners' property, the dog could be at risk.    Livestock owners are empowered under provincial law (Stray Animal Act) to destroy dogs that threaten their herd, however, all residents need to work together to resolve any issues so that extreme measures are not necessary.  
WILD BOARS  Wild boar at-large are a pest under Alberta’s Agricultural Pests Act.  If you see wild boar at large, or evidence of wild boar, please contact Alberta AG 310-FARM or our CVR Ag Team at 780-846-2244 
More information on wild boars



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