The Government of Canada Takes Action to Protect Aquatic Species at Risk in the Southern Prairie
September 4, 2019
Saskatoon, Saskatchewan — Nature is integral to the Canadian identity. The health of our aquatic environment and the wildlife within it support our culture and well-being, as well as the economy across Canada. Some of the species that find their home in the waters, rivers, lakes, estuaries, and marshes in the southern Prairies are at risk and need help to survive. We must take urgent action to protect them.
Today, the Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard, the Honourable Jonathan Wilkinson, announced up to $2.9 million in funding under the Canada Nature Fund for Aquatic Species at Risk. This funding will support projects in the southern Prairies to assess important habitats and improve the recovery of several aquatic species at risk, and will be matched by the contributions of partners actively engaged in the recovery and protection of aquatic species at risk.
Targeted species will include Lake Sturgeon, Carmine Shiner, Bigmouth Buffalo, Mapleleaf Mussel, Plains Minnow, and Mountain Sucker. The funding will support aquatic habitat and species recovery projects. One project would help restore habitat and enhance fish passage within Frenchman River, Qu’Appelle River, and Morgan Creek Watersheds. Another project would also seek to engage farmers and ranchers to improve ecosystems for aquatic species at risk in the southern Prairies, while a third would work to prevent the introduction and spread of invasive species.
We are working with the Water Security Agency, Invasive Species Centre, and ALUS Canada to finalize project agreements. Specific project details will be announced at a later date.
“Protecting and recovering species at risk is a shared responsibility. Through the Canada Nature Fund for Aquatic Species at Risk, our government is partnering with groups in the southern Prairies to fund the right projects that will make a real difference in protecting our aquatic habitats and species at risk.”
The Honourable Jonathan Wilkinson, Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard
The Canada Nature Fund for Aquatic Species at Risk stems from the historic $1.3 billion Nature Legacy Initiative announced by the Government of Canada as part of Budget 2018.
Last February, Fisheries and Oceans Canada launched the Canada Nature Fund for Aquatic Species At Risk. This is a 5-year, $55 million investment to support the recovery of aquatic species at risk. Funding has been targeted in seven priority areas across Canada and two priority threats in the marine environment. One of these priority places is the Southern Prairies Priority Area.
The Canada Nature Fund for Aquatic Species at Risk supports a new approach to the conservation of aquatic species through targeted federal investments. The Fund will enhance Canada’s culture of conservation, support Indigenous participation, and encourage protection efforts by all partners to ensure the long-term viability of Canada’s marine and freshwater ecosystems.
Office of the Minister of Fisheries, Oceans
and the Canadian Coast Guard
Fisheries and Oceans Canada
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