Coyotes, Cougars And Bears – Oh My! When Nature Comes Calling At Golf Courses

Bears Playing At Whistler Golf Course - Photo Courtesy of Sylvia Dolson, Whistler Bear Smart Society

By Ian Hutchinson/GNN

The following is a story Ian Hutchinson did earlier this year for the Canadian Society of Club Managers about the presence of predators and other wildlife on golf courses and how the game gets along with nature:

Director of golf Peter Smith wasn’t even out on the fairways and greens, so pace of play wasn’t an issue this summer when visitors slowly meandered through a parking lot at the Fairmont Hot Springs Resort in a British Columbia town by the same name, about 25 miles south of Radium.

In such a natural setting with mountains towering all around, the locals are used to seeing wildlife and visitors are thrilled when there’s a deer sighting as there was this day.

“There were two moms with three fawns that were taking their time, walking across the parking lot. They live here, this is their home. Everyone’s sort of respectful in trying to give the a little room and not scare them,” said Smith.

“Then, they run into the Buffalo blower, which is a very noisy piece of equipment that the little ones are bouncing all over the place and running away, but they don’t leave (the property). They’re quite accustomed to that and they’re just part of our everyday life at Fairmont and lots of the golf courses in this region,” he added.

The resort’s Riverside, Mountainside and Creekside courses provide golfers with a picturesque experience. Smith adds the wildlife they are likely to encounter enhances that experience in a big way.

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