Basking shark (Cetorhinus maximus) in Canadian Pacific Waters: recovery strategy

Official title: Recovery Strategy for the Basking Shark (Cetorhinus maximus) in Canadian Pacific Waters [Final Version] Species at Risk Act Recovery Strategy Series

Table of contents

Basking Shark (Pacific Population)

Recovery Strategy for the Basking Shark (Cetorhinus maximus) in Canadian Pacific Waters

Basking Shark (Pacific Population)

July 2011

About the Species at Risk Act Recovery Strategy Series

What is the Species at Risk Act (SARA)?

SARA is the Act developed by the federal government as a key contribution to the common national effort to protect and conserve species at risk in Canada. SARA came into force in 2003, and one of its purposes is "to provide for the recovery of wildlife species that are extirpated, endangered or threatened as a result of human activity."

What is recovery?

In the context of species at risk conservation, recovery is the process by which the decline of an endangered, threatened, or extirpated species due to human activity is arrested or reversed, and threats are removed or reduced to improve the likelihood of the species' persistence in the wild. A species will be considered recovered when its long-term persistence in the wild has been secured.

What is a Recovery Strategy?

A recovery strategy is a planning document that identifies what needs to be done to arrest or reverse the decline of a species resulting from human activity. It sets objectives and identifies the broad strategies and approaches to be undertaken. Detailed planning is done at the action plan stage.

Recovery strategy development is a commitment of all provinces and territories and of three federal agencies Environment Canada, Parks Canada Agency, and Fisheries and Oceans Canada -- under the Accord for the Protection of Species at Risk. Sections 37–46 of SARA ( ) outline both the required content and the process for developing recovery strategies published in this series.

A proposed recovery strategy must be posted on the Species at Risk Public Registry within one year after the wildlife species is added to the List of Wildlife Species at Risk for endangered species and within two years for threatened species. A period of three to four years, respectively, was permitted for those species that were automatically listed when SARA came into force.

What's next?

One or more action plans will be developed to identify specific actions to be undertaken, thereby advancing the implementation of the recovery strategy. Directions set in the recovery strategy, however, are sufficient to begin involving land managers and users, communities, and stakeholders in recovery implementation. Cost-effective measures to prevent the reduction or loss of the species should not be postponed for lack of full scientific certainty.

The Series

This series presents the recovery strategies prepared or adopted by the federal government under SARA. New documents will be added regularly as species get listed and as strategies are completed and updated.

To Learn More

To learn more about the Species at Risk Act and recovery initiatives, please consult the Species at Risk (SAR) Public Registry (


Final Recovery Strategy for the Basking Shark (Cetorhinus maximus) in Canadian Pacific waters

July 2011


Recommended Citation:

Fisheries and Oceans Canada. 2010. Recovery Strategy for the Basking Shark (Cetorhinus maximus) in Canadian Pacific Waters [Final]. Species at Risk Act Recovery Strategy Series. Fisheries and Oceans Canada, Ottawa. v + 25 pp.

Additional copies:

Additional copies can be downloaded from the SAR Public Registry (

Cover illustration:

Chris Gotschalk

Également disponible en français sous le titre
«Programme de rétablissement du pèlerin (Cetorhinus maximus) dans les eaux canadiennes du Pacifique [version finale]»

© Her Majesty the Queen in Right of Canada, represented by the Minister of the Environment 2011. All rights reserved.
ISBN 978-1-100-17544-7
Catalogue no. En3-4/95-2011E-PDF

Content (excluding the illustrations) may be used without permission, with appropriate credit to the source.

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