OTTAWA – The Government of Canada released on July 27 its proposed federal action plan on the protection and recovery of the boreal caribou.

In addition to plans and actions to protect and recover boreal caribou, the federal action plan also presents recovery measures that the Government of Canada is taking for boreal caribou, under three pillars:

  • science to support recovery, including the establishment of a knowledge consortium
  • recovery and protection, with a focus on critical habitat
  • reports on progress to ensure that recovery efforts are effective

Indigenous peoples, stakeholders, and other parties will be invited to take part in a series of webinars on this proposed action plan and to submit written feedback on the document by September 27, 2017.

An executive summary of the action plan can be found here. Information on the public consultations is available here.

A statement by the federal government says: “Effective recovery of the boreal caribou will require unprecedented levels of innovation, cooperation, and collaboration amongst the federal government, provinces, territories, Indigenous peoples, industry, environmental organizations, and local communities. It will need to involve creative measures to protect and enhance habitat while also working to ensure continued economic development and job creation.”

The Government of Canada plays a coordination role in ensuring boreal caribou are receiving adequate protection, because the vast majority of critical caribou habitat in Canada is managed by provinces and territories.

Provinces and territories are now working to develop range‑specific plans or other similar documents for boreal caribou by October 2017.

The boreal population of the woodland caribou (boreal caribou) has been listed as threatened under Canada’s Species at Risk Act since 2003 and has been in decline for some time.