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Bear-Proof Compost Bin

Photo by Michael Levenston

Bears are a part of city life in many municipalities in and around Vancouver. Our Hotline receives calls from residents about bears strolling into yards and knocking over compost bins in North Vancouver, Port Coquitlam, Whistler, Squamish and parts of Vancouver Island.

Laurie Chambers of Lund, BC, designed and built this beautiful bear-proof composter and we are lucky to have one at the Vancouver Compost Demonstration Garden.

Laurie says, “It was a big problem, the kind that requires a complete rethinking. This composter is made using concrete formwork, faced with stone, with recessed bolts holding aluminum lid, front door and back vent in place. As unique as it looks, this design uses proven methods for producing compost.”

“It’s a bonus that it turned out to be beautiful, but it did. Apart from being critter-proof, this is more than likely the first composter ever made that’s equal on the outside to the beauty of what’s going on inside: the transformation of organic wastes into rich, life-giving compost.”

Laurie’s Critter-Proof Composting website here.


1 Tom Sharp { 12.18.10 at 1:12 pm }

Laurie, I can hardly wait for your instruction book on building a bear proof composter. We live in Humboldt County, srrounded by redwoods and bears. Your design appears to be an attractive and practical solution. I intend to start the building process as soon as I get a copy of your book. Thanks for working on a project long overdue.

2 Max Pagani { 05.29.11 at 9:02 am }


I live in Wildwood in Powell River BC. We have bears all day long, some times two or three at a time. If I put out my waste I have a bear only minutes later. We never had such a bear problem especially in the early spring, it must be the recent local logging in the neighbourhood. I bury it cover it and try to hide no sucess. I need your solution, do you have plans, do you build off site?