The town of Canmore is continuing to trap its rabbit population but the animals are no longer being sent to a sanctuary, they are being killed.

This past spring, the town began catching the rabbits and shipping them to The Ears Society, an animal rescue group.  The society sterilized the animals and moved them to sanctuaries.

The sanctuaries are overcapacity and the town still has hundreds of rabbits to remove.  All of the remaining rabbits are being trapped and gassed.

“It's really a wildlife attractant problem and I think that people who don't live in Canmore don’t understand the extent of the problem,” says Sally Caudill, the Town of Canmore’s Environmental Care Coordinator.  “These rabbits are not a native species, they are pets that were released into the community.  Last year we had cougars in town chasing rabbits, this summer we had bears through the middle of town chasing rabbits.”

“Ultimately, the wildlife suffers from those encounters because they are exposed to people and usually it's at the cost of their own lives.”

The director of The Ears Society claims a big reason there's no sanctuary space right now is that her group has faced constant harassment over the last year and the response has scared off potential donors.