Notice of permit

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Regional or Local Number: JNP-2017-24038

Notice is hereby given that pursuant to the provisions of section 74 of the Species at Risk Act permit no. JNP-2017-24038 is issued.

Purpose:
Scientific research for the conservation of the species

Description:
Parks Canada is examining next steps for recovery of caribou within Jasper National Park, and continued monitoring wolves and caribou will be used to inform future decisions. The Agency will monitor caribou by helicopter (determining minimum population size and composition) and collect fecal samples as a component of non-invasive population monitoring (DNA extracted from fecal samples contributes to population estimates and calculation of vital rates). This activity may temporarily displace individuals from preferred habitats and increase sensory disturbance in caribou habitat. However, mitigations to reduce these impacts will be taken and the activity is not expected to affect the functionality of caribou habitat. In March 2021, Parks Canada will capture and radio collar females in the Tonquin caribou herd in order to better understand cause-specific mortality, current habitat use, and to determine a health profile of this herd (from blood and tissue samples).

Start Date: 2021-03-01   End Date: 2021-03-31

Issuing Authority: Parks Canada Agency

Authority Used:

  • Species at Risk Act
  • Canada National Parks Act

Location of Activity (province, territory or ocean):

  • Alberta

Affected Species:

Pre-Conditions:
Alternatives: Alternatives considered for this project are to leave the structures as is, leave only the chimney structure, maintain and retain the structures, and remove the structures completely now. Leaving the structures in whole or in part were not recommended actions due to the anticipated fiPopulation monitoring is a critical component of identifying effectiveness of management actions and status of woodland caribou within the National Park. Although the alternative of using non-invasive methods to calculate most population parameters are being implemented, there is no reasonable alternative to using helicopters to find animals and determine herd composition and minimum size. We will continue non-invasive population monitoring, but we lack information on cause-specific mortality (and timing), there is no alternative to radio collaring for acquiring this information. Mitigations: Researchers will try to land far from caribou and use a spotting scope to determine sex and age composition; avoid unnecessarily close approaches when conducting aerial surveys or ground observations; and collect scat from locations that caribou have already left whenever possible, or return to the site on a subsequent day or hour if caribou are using the site upon first arrival. Expert contractors with multiple years of experience and a low capture mortality record (< 2%) will be used to capture the caribou. Capture protocols are consistent with those in use for caribou and have been reviewed and accepted by the Parks Canada Animal Care Task Force. Capture will not be scheduled unless there is sufficient snow on the ground as caribou are found more quickly, move at slower speeds, and have adequate cushion during capture (to minimize risk to individuals). Jeopardy to Survival or Recovery of the Species: Despite the fact that all herds are small and declining, the impacts of the research on caribou vital rates are expected to be minimal. Any effects of the research are expected to be below the level of detectability and not impact the survival and recovery of caribou. Any negative impact is outweighed by the benefits of monitoring population trends towards developing effective management approaches. Protocols are in place to immediately cease capture operations and conduct a full review in the event of capture-related mortality.

Contact Person(s)
Parks Canada
Conservation Programs Branch
Protected Areas Establishment and Conservation
Parks Canada
30 Victoria Street 3rd floor
Gatineau, QC
J8X 0B3
Tel: 888-773-8888
Fax: 819-420-9273
pc.sarregistrycomments.pc@canada.ca; pc.commentairesderegistreeep.pc@canada.ca

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