3.1 Program Objectives

A range of broad goals will guide the Caribou Recovery Program over the next five years.

The goals include:

  • Reverse the decline and achieve stable, increasing populations of identified woodland caribou herds
  • Provide certainty to affected natural resource users
  • Advance collaboration and reconciliation with Indigenous communities
  • Actively collaborate with partners in caribou recovery
  • Increase public confidence via accountable, effective program delivery/management

These goals will direct how we build our plans and make decisions, how we consult with Indigenous communities, resource sectors, environmental groups and the general public, and how we take action on the ground.

The program objectives are to:

  • Increase the number of caribou
  • Maintain and recruit functional caribou habitat
  • Protect high-value caribou habitat in key areas
  • Provide predictable zonation for resource users
  • Provide predictable thresholds for resource
  • Support Indigenous communities in caribou recovery
  • Encourage Indigenous communities to participate in caribou recovery actions
  • Ensure caribou recovery planning efforts reflect Indigenous values interests and perspectives
  • Develop partnerships that will contribute to caribou recovery
  • Engage partners and indigenous communities in the development of the Caribou Recovery Program Plan
  • Communicate program objectives and results
  • Develop and improve business processes to transform deliver of caribou recovery
  • Prepare recovery plans for all herds that are supported by stakeholders

19 responses to “3.1 Program Objectives

    User avatar
    [-] Bryce

    Time is ticking for many southern mountain caribou. We need to act fast with this recovery program, or risk loosing many more herds in the 5 years of this plan.

    User avatar
    [-] Bryce

    5 years is a lofty goal for achieving stable & even increasing populations of caribou. Many of these herd's ranges are already so badly effected by industry, it will take far longer for things to be reversed.
    Providing certainty to affected natural resource users shouldn't mean allowing the status quo to remain. These groups have reaped the rewards of government policy heavily weighted in their favour for decades. It's time to put the brakes on before there is nothing left to protect.
    Collaboration with indigenous communities is crucial, but we need to act on their suggestions, not just nod, agree, then turn around and do what is best for industry.
    Collaboration is a must. Listening to the loudest, or most vocal though should be avoided.
    More transparency would help gain public trust.

    User avatar
    [-] Bryce

    The key here is to actually put the plan in place. There is already so much science on what needs to be done to help the caribou. The key is to act on it!!

    User avatar
    [-] Robert

    The level of management required to maintain caribou on the landscape is intense and the costs are huge. We know that we must control (kill) virtually all predators in perpetuity, as well as augment reproduction through penning and transplanting, also over an extended time frame. Someone needs to ask if this is actually realistic and sustainable?
    Caribou are creatures that prefer cold climates and vast areas of relatively undisturbed habitat. If you believe the climate is warming in perpetuity through anthropogenic causes, then are you not fighting a losing battle?
    If you promote an ever increasing human population and the disturbance brought about by their activities, how do you square this with managing a species that requires virtually no disturbance?
    Most biologists agree, that if we shut down the forest, tourism, and the oil and gas industries right now, the decline and extinction of most herds would continue.

    User avatar
    [-] bert

    I believe your terms of reference," The provincial caribou recovery program will consider ways to reduce threats to caribou, while balancing the needs of all British Columbian's" is not going to work because the needs of all BC'ers overwhelm the needs for all caribou. This is not a balancing act because it has been proven beyond doubt that ecosystems degrade under this man made system. The list of threatened and endangered species has continued to increase because ecosystems continue to be marginalized due to our demand for resources and jobs. Caribou do not vote and if they could their numbers would be insignificant to persuade politicians to protect their environment. I am not saying we shut down resource extraction but I am suggesting that a compromise solution will not save the caribou. The best solution is for us to keep out of their territory. No other will work.

    User avatar
    [-] Carolee

    The first goal here should be the mission. The other goals are means to the end of the first goal.

    User avatar
    [-] Hal

    here in the south selkirks we have only twelve left…maybe decreased to eleven after the winter. from what i understand they are all female. really difficult to enhance growth with such gender imbalance. what a dillemma…so difficult for the herd and those charged with attempting to achieve stable numbers and enhance growth. cheering for the creatures and the biologists, but having to swallow hard knowing that in our lifetime the mountain caribou here in the south selkirks will likely vanish…

    User avatar
    [-] David

    I'm liking this. Restoration is an excellent management tool… by blocking ROW naturally daming these "holes in the ecosystem" I believe can aid in recovery.
    Ensuring industry understands their role in recovery by including within their CA and EA's requirements to prevent further "holes" being created and "blocking" the ones that already exist in sure is on the block?
    Is bringing back the railroad an option?, transporting resourses in an environmentally sustainable fashion should be as important as making the latest Apple product.
    Killing wolves?
    If the data exists that by targeting these pressures works for Caribou. Do it. Wolves will come back. However, when they do, our landscape and our caribou better be ready. We don't want to have to do this again… I hope you're thinking about what happens when goals have been met.
    Everyone states to start now. I just want to express how grateful I am that we're doing the research to manage this without acting blind. We do not need a management disaster in the recent years that we face horrible fire seasons and climate change.

    User avatar
    [-] Ben

    The research has been extensive to date. Its time to act on the herds that’s actually have a chance at maintaining a sustainable population. The extirpation of the South Selkirk and Purcell herds should be taken as lesson on what will happen to the remainder of BC’s Mountian Caribou if no action is taken.

    User avatar
    [-] Ariel

    The culling of other species in need of protection like our coastal wolves does not address the deeper issue of habitat loss. Please approach this holistically with a future focused plan that will ensure our habitat and wildlife are being kept in balance and given the space and resources needed to thrive.

    User avatar
    [-] Kempton

    "caribou are highly dependent on old growth forest and alpine areas for critical food sources."
    Out of 14 objectives to save a wild species from extinction , 5 of them are to consult/encourage/support/engage indigenous people and 5 are about business and stakeholders. Seriously? It's one thing for lawyers and politicians to spend millions of dollars creating politically correct objectives and covering their derrieres. Let the biologists and ecologists do what they need to do to increase the herd populations. Take a page from Ed Abbey and keep people out of caribou habitat. So what if someone can't snow mobile or "recreate" down a couple trails for a couple winters. Let them go for a walk, take up photography, and teach kids to respect wildlife! Start enforcing laws and fines for illegal and irresponsible road clearing and polluting and unchecked resource exploitation. Stop nattering about "consulting and communicating" and get on with wildlife protection. Feed the caribou! We're getting our mandates confused with making everyone happy. This is about a threatened species hanging on by a thread because of human greed. Canadians, once admired world over for our great wilderness and stewardship, have become so soft and selfish. There is One objective here: Save the caribou.

    User avatar
    [-] Alex

    There should be a numerical population goal based on carrying capacity or genetic viability. A stable herd of 5 caribou is not helpful long term.

    User avatar
    [-] Matt

    Is there a point in maintaining and recruiting functional caribou habitat if it's not protected?
    I would suggest that any habitat to be recruited is also protected.

    User avatar
    [-] Ashley

    Culling wolves should not be a part of the solution. Please base your decision on science. Loss of habitat appears to be the root of the problem and shrinking another wildlife population reduces overall biodiversity. Your government can do better than this.

    User avatar
    [-] Trevor

    I take the view that your objectives, honourable though they are, necessarily operate within the constraints described in the following abstract. The paper itself is scheduled to be published very soon. Don't hesitate to be in touch if you'd like to read more.

    "Canada’s Deep-Snow Mountain Caribou (DSC) is in line to become this nation's most conspicuous contribution to the Sixth Mass Extinction. DSC are resident in mountainous southeastern British Columbia (BC) where in winter they subsist on hair lichens foraged from old conifers. Extensive tracts of oldgrowth forests are crucial to DSC survival: first because such forests alone support hair lichens in quantity sufficient to their needs; and second because oldgrowth forests provide DSC with needed space to avoid their predators. In 2007, the BC government introduced its Mountain Caribou Recovery Implementation Plan (MCRIP), which committed to recovering DSC to historic numbers through aggressive predator control coupled, incongruously, with intense logging of their lower-elevation habitat used in early winter. Ten years later, the most immediate outcome of MCRIP is a 40% drop in the global DSC population, though two longer-term legacy can also be identified: (1) a disproportionate increase in predation owing to reduced spatial separation between DSC and their predators; and (2) a substantially increased risk of winter starvation owing to reductions in early-winter hair lichen availability – reductions that, as shown here, will need 120 to 150 years to repair. In the mean time, DSC are now set to undergo a century-long existential bottleneck in which recovery and survival requires, at a minimum, an immediate halt to corporate forestry within their range coupled with generous expansion of key protected areas. Cut-and-cull conservation has been tried and has failed. The broader implications of preventable extinction in one of the world’s wealthiest nations are briefly explored."

    User avatar
    [-] Victor

    Caribou research should be funded and housed in an academic institution or cooperative wildlife unit, which would minimize big “P” politics and provide focus rigour required to inform science based decisions.

    User avatar
    [-] Victor

    There should be legislated objectives for all Mountain Caribou populations, as well as legislated objectives for habitat, and all other species to ensure caribou recovery is successful and those involved are accountable.

    User avatar
    [-] Karsten

    The only solution is more protected areas from logging. There are still large areas around the Kootenay's that have some how not been touched by the logging industry. These areas like by Rossland and by Creston need protection now if those herds are ever to come back.

    User avatar
    [-] Mark

    These are not objectives they are goals. Objectives must be: 1) Specific, 2) Measurable, 3) Achievable, 4) Realistic and 5) Time bound. In other words an objective is to go from X to Y in time T. Without these 5 elements it is impossible to implement specific actions or measure outcomes. Please redo the objectives using this format and be specific to each herd

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