Canadian proposals: 17th Conference of the Parties

Date Posted: 2016-05-02

Canada is pleased to announce that three proposals have been submitted to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) Secretariat for the 17th Conference of Parties to CITES. These proposals will be posted on the CITES website shortly.

Below is a brief summary of the three Canadian proposals:

Peregrine Falcon

  1. Transfer the Peregrine Falcon (Falco peregrinus) from Appendix I to Appendix II.
    • The Peregrine Falcon has a wide distribution and global range, the ability to adapt to different habitats and populations are generally stable or increasing. In 2014 the species was assessed and listed on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species in the category of Least Concern.
    • Species that do not satisfy the relevant CITES criteria for continued listing in Appendix I are eligible to be transferred to Appendix II when one of several precautionary measures is met (Resolution Conf. 9.24 (Rev. CoP16).  Canada has gathered information from range States and key trading partners to evaluate whether this is the case. Peregrine Falcons are effectively protected in Canada through federal, provincial and territorial laws and decisions on harvest would remain the responsibility of provinces and territories in the event of a transfer to Appendix II.

Eastern cougar

  1. Transfer of Eastern cougar (Puma concolor couguar) from CITES Appendix I to Appendix II.
    • Puma concolor couguar, the cougar of eastern North America, is considered extinct and there is no trade. Sightings and captures of cougars in eastern North America are extremely unlikely to be of Puma concolor couguar lineage. With this proposal all cougars in Canada would be listed on CITES Appendix II, and they would continue to be protected under federal, provincial and territorial laws.

Wood bison

  1. Remove wood bison (Bison bison athabascae) from CITES Appendix II.  
    • A review of the available biological information against the CITES listing criteria and precautionary measures indicates that the subspecies does not meet the criteria for continued listing on CITES. The wood bison is not threatened by international trade. Regulations are in place federally, including Agriculture Acts, and through provincial and territorial wildlife Acts to protect the wood bison.

In addition, as part of the call for proposals during our public consultation process for CoP17, Environment and Climate Change Canada received one proposal for consideration to transfer walrus (Odobenus rosmarus) from Appendix III to Appendix II.

After a thorough review of the proposal and hearing from our Inuit co-management partners and the public, Canada has decided it will not put forward the proposal to list walrus on Appendix II at the 17th Conference of the Parties.  We consider that the species does not meet the criteria for listing on Appendix II and there is ongoing adaptive management that ensures sustainable use. Canada takes the conservation of walrus very seriously and monitoring trade of walrus through CITES Appendix II is not necessary to assist the conservation of walrus at this time. 

The proposals submitted by Canada will encourage decision-making in CITES that is founded on species conservation and consideration of risks to species from international trade, in line with the purpose of CITES and consistent with how Canada makes its decisions in the CITES fora.

Details for the public consultation meeting to be held in Ottawa on June 14, 2016 are now posted on the Environment and Climate Change Canada website. If you have not already done so, please let us know if you wish to attend this meeting at ec.scientificauthority.ec@canada.ca, or by fax at (819) 938-3984.

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