The objective of the Ontario Wildlife Damage Compensation (OWDC) program is to provide financial compensation to producers whose livestock, poultry or honey bees are damaged or killed by wildlife
In 2018, the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food & Rural Affairs (OMAFRA) undertook a review of the OWDC program. This was a direct result of advocacy efforts from OFA and its commodity partners to address the issues in the program which arose from the changes implemented in 2017.
This fact sheet highlights who does what within the program and key eligibility requirements producers need to know.
Who Does What?
The municipal or territorial investigator is responsible for:
- Carrying out a full and impartial investigation within 72 hours of receiving the notification of the injury or death of livestock or poultry.
- Taking three to six colour photos per eligible kill/injury incurred and collecting all necessary information to accurately complete the application.
- Municipal investigators are responsible for providing a completed program application to the owner and municipality within seven business days of completing an investigation.
- The Municipal Investigator has no role in setting a value on the dead/injured livestock.
The bee investigator is responsible for:
- Carrying out a full and impartial investigation with three business days of receiving notification of the damage to a beehive, bee colonies and/or beehive-related equipment.
- Providing a completed program application to the owner and OMAFRA’s program administrator within seven business days of completing an investigation.
Municipalities are responsible for:
- Appointing qualified municipal investigators.
- Ensuring the application is complete and collecting any missing information prior to submission.
- Reviewing and submitting completed applications and any additional evidence to OMAFRA’s program administrator.
- Paying an owner’s approved application, in accordance with the program guidelines and values assigned by the program administrator.
- Providing Statement of Farm Support Payments (AGR-1) to owners who receive compensation.
- Paying and reimbursing municipal investigators.
OMAFRA is responsible for:
- Administering the program.
- Appointing investigators for territories without a municipal organization and bee investigators.
- Posting the standardized pricing table containing the fair market values for all eligible livestock and poultry, and updating the table on a regular basis.
- Reviewing applications to determine eligibility and assigning values based on the information provided.
- Providing the owner with a written decision within 30 business days of receiving a complete application.
- Receiving owners’ requests for appeal, determining eligibility for appeal and notifying the Program Director and independent reviewer of all eligible requests for review.
- Notifying the owner of the recommendation from the independent reviewer as well as the final decision of the appeal.
- Reimbursing municipalities in accordance with the program guidelines.
Producers are Responsible for:
- Demonstrating reasonable care of livestock, poultry, beehives, bee colonies and beehive-related equipment in relation to the prevention of predation
- Notifying their municipality within 48 hours of discovering the injury or death of livestock or poultry, or discovering damage to beehives, a bee colony and/or beehive-related equipment.
- Preserving the injury or kill site and carcass (or carcasses) until the municipal or territorial investigator has investigated
- It is recommended that upon discovery, producers document the predation event by taking pictures and taking notes about the state of the carcass and kill site including any mitigating factors like weather.
- Disposing of all dead livestock and poultry in a manner that is acceptable under the Ontario Regulation 106/09 of the Nutrient Management Act, 2002.
Producer Eligibility Requirements:
- Have a valid premises ID (PID) number for the farm property where the damage or kill occurred
- Have a valid Farm Business Registration Number (FBRN) within the current or previous calendar year or valid FBRN exemption
- Demonstrate Reasonable care of livestock, poultry and bees
- Ensure availability of evidence that damage/death caused by predation
|Eligible Wildlife Species for Damage to Livestock and Poultry||Eligible Wildlife Species for Damage to Beehives, Bee Colonies and/or Beehive-related
- Eligible livestock/poultry killed by an eligible predator
- Vet costs for eligible livestock/poultry injured by an eligible predator
- Bee Hives, bee colonies and/or beehive-related equipment damaged by an eligible predator
Required Evidence to Approve a Claim
The following types of criteria/information will be used to assess applications
- Evidence that livestock was alive prior to the attack
- Evidence that livestock did not die of natural causes
- Evidence of a predatory attack (e.g., blood, sign of tissue damage/struggle).
- A full or partial carcass is required.
A new addition to the program guidelines is the consideration of secondary evidence to help support a claim. Secondary evidence falls into two categories.
To help show that predation was the cause of death
- Herd Behaviour
- History of predation
Factors that may have impacted the availability of primary evidence
- Rainfall washing the evidence of blood away
- Recording the time between the estimated time of kill and discovery of the carcass.
- Other mitigating circumstances that may have made it difficult to present evidence of predation.
Secondary evidence is intended to support application evaluation, particularly in difficult cases where primary evidence may be inconclusive. Secondary evidence on its own cannot be used to substantiate predation.