Woodland Caribou Monitoring Project

Woodland caribou are large ungulates (animals with hooves, other examples include deer and moose) that live in the boreal forest. They feed only on slow-growing lichen in the winter and as a result they need very mature forest to survive. Woodland caribou are a threatened Species at Risk in Canada; this means that their populations are in decline and this has been officially recognized by the federal government. Although no one knows for sure why this is happening, it is known that caribou do not like disturbance like roads, seismic lines, forestry cut blocks or oil and gas development in their habitat.

The main objective of the Woodland Caribou Monitoring Project is to build wildlife monitoring capacity in interested First Nations communities through workshops and classroom presentations on methods for caribou monitoring. In addition, this project promotes open dialogue about the importance of habitat conservation, threats to caribou, and details around what it means to be a Species at Risk. School groups, elders, and technicians are all welcome to participate in the monitoring training, which is a great opportunity for knowledge transfer between generations.

If you are interested in learning more about the Species at Risk Monitoring and GIS Mapping Program, please contact Laura Machial at 780.483.8601 or lmachial@tsag.net

Funding for this program is provided by Environment Canada’s Aboriginal Fund for Species at Risk (AFSAR) program.