CALGARY -- Alberta Fish and Wildlife Enforcement has issued a warning to residents of a community northwest of Calgary following a suspected fatal bear attack.

According to officials, a person was found dead on a trail on private property southwest of Water Valley on Tuesday.

The victim had been out for a walk on their land and it's believed the death was the result of an encounter with a bear.

The identity of the deceased has not been released.

Residents of the area are being encouraged to travel in groups and to equip themselves with deterrents including bear spray.

Bear traps have been placed in the area by fish and wildlife officers.

The investigation into the death is underway. Alberta Fish and Wildlife Enforcement says a grizzly bear and cub had been seen in the area of the attack and the sow was "exhibiting aggressive behaviour."

Anyone who encounters a bear in the wild is encouraged to:

  • Stay calm and not run;
  • Survey the area for cubs or animal carcasses that the bear will protect. Back away in the opposite direction;
  • Keep a watch on the bear but avoid staring as it may provoke aggression;
  • Speak to the bear so it doesn't mistake you for prey;
  • Use a noisemaker;
  • Prepared to defend yourself using bear spray; and
  • Seek shelter in a car or building.

Anyone who spots a bear is asked to report the sighting to the Report A Poacher line at 1-800-642-3800

The community of Water Valley is located approximately 40 kilometres north of Cochrane and 60 kilometres northwest of Calgary city limits.