Order Amending Schedule 1 to the Species at Risk Act
This Order Amending Schedule 1 of the SARA (the Order) helps protect 12 species at risk by adding them to the List of wildlife species at risk or by modifying their status. In addition, two species already on the List will have their name changed only. The objective of the Order is to protect species so they can recover. The Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada (COSEWIC) reassesses species every 10 years, which is one of the ways to monitor the health of the species. There will be monitoring through the recovery plans or management plans developed for the species and reassessed every 5 years.
The 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 are added to the list of species at risk (Schedule 1 of SARA) under various designations depending on the severity of the risk of their disappearance from the wild in Canada. Following listing, species designated as endangered, threatened or extirpated benefit from SARA’s general prohibitions, including 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, in the form of recovery strategies or action plans.
A special concern status in Schedule 1 of SARA does not trigger the general prohibitions, but requires a management plan to be developed. This plan includes conservation measures to preserve the wildlife species and avoid a future decline of its populations.
Table 1: Amendments to Schedule 1 of SARA
|Common Species Name||Range||Amendment|
|Action||Old Status||New Status|
|False-foxglove Sun Moth
||Ont.||New Addition||No Status||Endangered|
|Acuteleaf Small Limestone Moss||B.C.||New Addition||No Status||Endangered|
|Quebec Rockcress||Que.||New Addition
(Great Lakes Plains population)
|Ont.||New Addition||No Status||Special Concern|
|Man.||New Addition||No Status
|Eastern Painted Turtle||Que. N.B. N.S.||New Addition
||No Status||Special Concern|
|Midland Painted Turtle||Ont. Que.||New Addition||No Status||Special Concern|
|Yukon Wild Buckwheat||Y.T.||New Addition||No Status||Special Concern|
|Allegheny Mountain Dusky Salamander (Appalachian population)||Que.||Reclassification||Threatened||Endangered|
|Red-headed Woodpecker||Sask. Man. Ont. Que.||Reclassification||Threatened||Endangered|
|Prairie Skink||Man.||Reclassification||Endangered||Special Concern|
|Coastal Vesper Sparrow||B.C.||Name change only|
|Streaked Horned Lark||B.C.||Name change only|
The economic impacts of making these additions or modifications have been assessed and it was determined that they will have a low socio-economic impact.
Protecting species at risk in Canada helps to maintain biodiversity and can help maintain ecosystem function and services, such as natural pest control, pollination, temperature regulation and carbon fixing. 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.
- Healthy wildlife populations: By aiming to ensure that wildlife species are provided appropriate protection, the Order helps to ensure that species that are healthy remain healthy, and that populations of species at risk listed under federal law exhibit trends that are consistent with recovery strategies and management plans. The Order also contributes to SDG 15 Life on Land.
- Effective action on climate change: By supporting the conservation of biodiversity and maintenance of healthy ecosystems, the Order indirectly contributes to this goal since many ecosystems play a key role in mitigating the impacts of climate change. The Order also contributes to SDG 13 Climate Action.
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