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B.C. First Nations band takes initiative with caribou-recovery plan of its own

Jun 10. 13

A B.C. First Nation has published its own recovery plan for a herd of endangered woodland caribou, in the absence of a federal government plan.

The West Moberly band says the Southern Mountain population of woodland caribou were listed as a threatened species under the federal Species at Risk act in 2003, but no recovery strategy has been put in place since then.

The band says a provincial recovery plan will not address the problem.

The Klinse-Za herd in the First Nation’s traditional territory near Fort St. John, B.C., has now dwindled to 23 of fewer animals, so the band has published its own plan.

It includes penning pregnant cows to protect them until they give birth, augmenting the herd with members of neighbouring herds, and restoring critical habitat.

Two years ago, the band won a court fight over the province’s decision to grant a coal-mining exploration permit that might affect the endangered Burnt Pine caribou herd in its territory, with a ruling that the province had to consult more fully with the band.

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