Species at Risk Act: action plans

An action plan outlines the projects or activities required to meet the goals and objectives outlined in the recovery strategy. This includes information on the species habitat, protection measures, and an evaluation of the socio-economic costs and benefits. It is the second part of the two-part recovery planning process and is used to implement the projects or activities to improve the species status.

The competent minister, in cooperation with others, must prepare one or more action plans based on a recovery strategy. The recovery strategy indicates when an action plan will be completed.

More specifically, the action plan will include:

  • an identification of the species' critical habitat (unless it is not possible to do so) and examples of activities that are likely to affect it
  • proposed measures for protecting the critical habitat
  • an identification of any portions of the critical habitat that have not been protected
  • a statement of the steps for implementing the recovery strategy and when they are to take place; and
  • an evaluation of the socio-economic costs of the action plan and any implementation benefits

Interested parties may include federal, provincial, and territorial ministers, wildlife management boards, Aboriginal organizations, landowners, leasees, and any other person or organization that the competent minister considers appropriate. In preparing an action plan, the competent minister may adopt a multi-species or ecosystems approach. Similar to the recovery strategy, action plans are dynamic documents that can be modified.

Under the Act, proposed action plans allow for a 60-day comment period, in which time any person may file written comments with the competent minister. Within 30 days of the closing of the public comment period, the proposed action plan must then be finalized. Action plans are evaluated every 5 years and updated as necessary.


Official version

The official version of the recovery documents is the one published in PDF. All hyperlinks were valid as of date of publication.

Non-official version

The non-official version of the recovery documents is published in HTML format and all hyperlinks were valid as of date of publication.

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