2018 Amendment to Schedule 1 of the Species at Risk Act (31 terrestrial species)

A review of the potential environmental impacts of from amendments to the list of species at risk under the Species at Risk Act published in the Canada Gazette.

This order amending Schedule 1 of the Species at Risk Act (the Order) helps protect 31 terrestrial species at risk by adding them or by updating their designation on the list of species at risk. The objective of the Order is to protect species so they can recover.

Protecting species at risk in Canada helps to maintain biodiversity. Ecosystem function and services, such as natural pest control, pollination, temperature regulation and carbon fixing, can also be maintained by protecting species at risk. Ecosystem functions and services in turn are important to the health of Canadians and have important ties to Canada’s economy. Small changes in an ecosystem can result in the loss of individuals and species, which can lead to irreversible and wide-ranging effects.

The Order supports the following 2016 to 2019 Federal Sustainable Development Strategy (FSDS) goals:

  • Healthy wildlife populations: by providing protection for species at risk
  • Effective action on climate change: by supporting conservation, since many ecosystems play a key role in mitigating the impacts of climate change

It will also support the 2030 Agenda and its Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) concerning SDG 15 Life on land and SDG 13 Climate action.

Table 1: Addition of 21 species to Schedule 1 of SARA and reclassification of 10 species

Species (21) added to Schedule 1 of SARA

Mammals

Common name (scientific name)

Status

Badger taxus subspecies, American (Taxidea taxus taxus)

Special concern

Amphibians

Common name (scientific name)
Status
Salamander, Eastern Tiger (Ambystoma tigrinum) Carolinian population Extirpated
Salamander, Eastern Tiger (Ambystoma tigrinum) Prairie population Endangered
Salamander, Wandering (Aneides vagrans) Special concern
Salamander, Western Tiger (Ambystoma mavortium) Prairie / Boreal population Special concern
Salamander, Western Tiger (Ambystoma mavortium) Southern Mountain population Endangered

Reptiles

Common name (scientific name) Status
Massasauga (Sistrurus catenatus) Carolinian populationa Endangered
Massasauga (Sistrurus catenatus) Great Lakes / St. Lawrence populationa Threatened

a: COSEWIC recognized the currently listed Massasauga (Sistrurus catenatus) as two separate wildlife species under SARA. The proposed Order strikes Massasauga (Sistrurus catenatus) from Schedule 1 and adds these new designatable units.

Molluscs

Common name (scientific name) Status
Slug, Haida Gwaii (Staala gwaii) Special concern

Arthropods

Common name (scientific name) Status
Clubtail, Riverine (Stylurus amnicola) Great Lakes Plains population Endangered
Grasshopper, Greenish-white (Hypochlora alba) Special concern
Spider, Georgia Basin Bog (Gnaphosa snohomish) Special concern
Tiger Beetle, Gibson’s Big Sand (Cicindela formosa gibsoni) Threatened

Plants

Common name (scientific name) Status
Aster, Nahanni (Symphyotrichum nahanniense)   Special concern
Braya, Hairy (Braya pilosa) Endangered
Goldenrod, Showy (Solidago speciosa) Boreal populationb Threatened
Goldenrod, Showy (Solidago speciosa) Great Lakes Plains populationb Endangered
Lewisia, Tweedy’s (Lewisiopsis tweedyi) Endangered
Locoweed, Hare-footed (Oxytropis lagopus) Threatened

b: COSEWIC recognized the currently listed Showy Goldenrod (Solidago speciosa) as two separate wildlife species under SARA. The proposed Order strikes Showy Goldenrod (Solidago speciosa) from Schedule 1 and adds these new designatable units.

Lichens  

Common name (scientific name) Status
Waterfan, Eastern (Peltigera hydrothyria) Threatened
Waterfan, Western (Peltigera gowardii) Special concern

Species (10) reclassified in Schedule 1 of SARA

Mammals

Common name (scientific name) Status
Prairie Dog, Black-tailed (Cynomys ludovicianus) Special concern to threatened

Amphibians

Common name (scientific name) Status
Frog, Rocky Mountain Tailed (Ascaphus montanus) Endangered to threatened

Reptiles

Common name (scientific name) Status
Turtle, Eastern Musk (Sternotherus odoratus) Threatened to special concern

Arthropods  

Common name (scientific name) Status
Metalmark, Mormon (Apodemia mormo) Prairie population Threatened to special concern
Skipper, Dakota (Hesperia dacotae) Threatened to endangered

Plants  

Common name (scientific name)

Status

Aster, Crooked-stem (Symphyotrichum prenanthoides) Threatened to special concern
Braya, Fernald’s (Braya fernaldii) Threatened to endangered
Gentian, Plymouth (Sabatia kennedyana) Threatened to endangered
Pennywort, Water (Hydrocotyle umbellata) Threatened to special concern
Pepperbush, Sweet (Clethra alnifolia) Special concern to threatened

The economic impacts of making these modifications have been assessed and it was determined that they will have a low socio-economic impact (see Regulatory Analysis Impact Statement).

More Information

The Species at Risk Act (SARA) provides protections to species at risk by:

  • preventing wildlife species from being extirpated or becoming extinct
  • providing for the recovery of wildlife species that are extirpated, endangered or threatened as a result of human activity and to manage species of special concern to prevent them from becoming endangered or threatened
  • responding to the advice of scientists

Species can be added to the list of species at risk (Schedule 1 of SARA) under various designations. This depends on the severity of the risk of disappearance from the wild in Canada. Following listing, species designated as endangered, threatened or extirpated benefit from SARA’s general prohibitions, which include protections against the killing, harming or harassing and against damaging or destroying their residences (i.e. nests, burrows, etc.). SARA also requires recovery planning efforts to address threats to the survival or recovery of the listed species.

A special concern status in Schedule 1 of SARA does not trigger the general prohibitions, but a management plan is developed. This includes conservation measures to preserve the wildlife species and avoid a future decline of its populations.

Species are reassessed by the Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada (COSEWIC) every 10 years,. which  This is one of the ways to monitor the health of the species. Monitoring will also be done through the recovery plans or management plans. These are developed for the species and reassessed every 5 years.  

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