Restoring and conserving connectivity in Canada

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Daniel Kraus, Andrea Hebb, Craig Harding, Kateri Monticone, Josh Noseworthy, Chynthia Patry

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While Canada contains some of the world’s last areas of wilderness, the southern region of the country has been significantly altered by habitat conversion and fragmentation. Loss of connectivity is impacting ecological functions, increasing the extinction risk of threatened and wide-ranging wildlife, and limiting the capacity of species and ecosystems to adapt to climate change. Protecting and restoring connectivity in southern Canada is critical to maintain biodiversity nationally and in adjacent regions of the U.S. Our recent analysis of terrestrial connectivity across southern Canada and the northern U.S. supports conservation efforts by highlighting corridors between existing protected areas and large habitat blocks. Many of these key areas for connectivity are well-known (such as Yellowstone to Yukon), but other important sites currently have a limited conservation response. The results of our analysis will be presented along with several case studies of on-going efforts to restore and conserve ecological corridors. These case studies from across Canada include connectivity projects that will maintain wildlife migrations, reduce in-breeding, and facilitate range shifts. The case studies will each include a summary of lessons learned and suggested best practices for the planning and implementation of connectivity conservation and restoration in Canada including ecological, social and political factors.

Resource Type:
Conference Presentation, SER2021

Pre-approved for CECs under SER's CERP program