New bylaw focuses on responsible livestock ownership

October 5, 2022

New bylaw focuses on responsible livestock ownership

A new, modernized and enhanced Responsible Livestock Ownership Bylaw has replaced the Animal Control and Apiculture Bylaws. Approved by Council on October 4, 2022, Bylaw 53-2022 is effective immediately.

“Thank you to the many residents who got involved through public engagement,” says Mayor Rod Frank. “Your input, along with extensive research and expert consultation, was essential to developing a bylaw that will better support agricultural and rural lifestyle opportunities, while balancing rural living and neighbour relations.”

A focus on responsible livestock ownership ensures the bylaw is about more than controlling animals - it is about respecting animal and public health and safety; neighbouring properties; the environment and the economy. The bylaw has three key principles:

  • Minimize disease risk
  • Support animal welfare
  • Promote environmental and land stewardship

Changes, enhancements and modernizations

  • Banning of new wild boar farms - protecting wildlife, the environment and agriculture from wild boar at large, a provincial pest.
  • Honeybee management – new and updated requirements to encourage honeybee health include:
    • Parameters on the number of hives in an area and proximity to other beekeepers
    • Updated apiculture permit application
  • An updated over-limit permit application
  • Expanded fees and charges schedule for infractions
  • An appeal process for permits
  • A new temporary livestock event permit application for short term instances such as parades, therapy and educational opportunities  

Permit applications (apiculture, over-limit, livestock event) include a process to help residents consider livestock management challenges and how to notify adjacent neighbours.

Additional tools and resources to educate and assist residents, to be rolled out over the coming months

The new bylaw allows Strathcona County to better investigate concerns and achieve compliance through education. Tools and resources outlining responsible ownership expectations for specific livestock will include:

  • Pasture management to prevent overgrazing 
  • Manure management to minimize runoff and excessive odours
  • Livestock containment requirements 
  • Animal wellness considerations for space, disease management and predation control 

Unchanged details

The livestock allowances outlined in the previous Animal Control Bylaw are not changing at this time. The new bylaw’s enhancements and modernizations should address most concerns, although there will be situations where the number or type of livestock is not sustainable on a property, even with superb livestock management practices.

Based on resident feedback from the last phase of public engagement on proposed new livestock allowances, the County will continue to evaluate how livestock are kept. Allowances may be reviewed again in the future, with the potential for additional engagement to better understand the interests and needs of the rural community.

The County heard during the final survey that not all residents were aware of existing livestock allowances. Those with more animals on their property than the bylaw allows can obtain an over-limit permit with proof they are able to manage factors such as manure, pasture and overall well-being of animals.

To protect public health and safety, and reduce disease risk that affects commercial producers, permanently housed livestock will not be permitted in urban service areas. This is consistent with the County's previous decision about urban chickens.

More information:


Contact: Strathcona County Communications, 780-410-6595