Revelstoke, British Columbia Caribou Recovery Action Group

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Revelstoke, Canada

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Type: Policy

Status: Established in 2002

Source File:



The British Columbia Conservation Data Centre (CDC) placed the Mountain Caribou on the provincial Red List in 2000. The CDC Red List includes species that are candidates for legal status as provincially Threatened or Endangered. Mountain Caribou is an arboreal lichen winter-feeding ecotype of Woodland Caribou found primarily in south-eastern British Columbia. In May 2000, the Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada (COSEWIC) designated Woodland Caribou (Rangifer tarandus caribou) within the Southern Mountains Ecological Area as Threatened. This status was reaffirmed in May, 2002.

In September, 2002, the Mountain Caribou Technical Advisory Committee (MCTAC) released a Strategy for the Recovery of Mountain Caribou in British Columbia. One of the actions identified in the B.C. Strategy was the establishment of local Recovery Action Groups which bring together local stakeholders and government agencies to develop Recovery Action Plans for local populations or groups of populations.

The ultimate goal is to undertake activities that lead to the down-listing of woodland caribou from their “threatened” status under COSEWIC.

Specific objectives are:

1. To establish a local (Revelstoke) Recovery Action Group (RRAG);
2. In consultation with the MCTAC (or a Kootenay Region RAG), develop a local (Revelstoke) Recovery Action Plan for local caribou populations. The recovery plan will primarily focus on the Revelstoke herd (identified as #5 in the B.C. Strategy), but the RRAG may also deal with the Monashee (#4) and Central Rockies (#6) herds as appropriate;
3. To initiate local recovery actions as appropriate (e.g. public education, fundraising, voluntary best practices, etc.)
4. To make recommendations to revise the Minister’s Advisory Committee (MAC) Plan if necessary to ensure it is consistent with the caribou recovery strategies developed by the RRAG.

The RRAG will be comprised of representative stakeholders from the community. Committee members will be selected from the following stakeholder groups:

  • timber harvesting
  • hunting/guiding
  • environmental sector
  • national parks
  • heli-skiing
  • snowmobiling
  • public at large
  • First Nations
  • lead government agencies (i.e. WLAP)

It may be that a member of the MCTAC will also sit as a member of the RRAG. While representatives of the committee will be selected from the various stakeholder groups, their primary responsibility will be to achieve the goals and objectives adopted by the RRAG, not to advance the cause of any specific stakeholder group.

In addition to the RRAG, a technical team representing various provincial ministries, Parks Canada and the Revelstoke Community Forest Corporation, will also be formed to provide technical assistance to the RRAG.


1. The RRAG will work in conjunction with the MCTAC and other sub-regional recovery groups to help implement the provincial recovery strategy.
2. The RRAG will generally adopt the Terms of Reference suggested by the Draft Recovery Operations Manual, November 20, 2001 (copy attached). The Chair of the Revelstoke Recovery Action Group will be selected by Revelstoke City Council.
3. The guiding principles of caribou recovery action plans and implementation will be consistent with those identified in Section IV (page 45) of the MCTAC report which are based on science, shared stewardship and financial capacity.
4. The MCTAC report indicates that the goals and objectives “should be tempered with the reality of the current demands of an expanding human populace and the resource based economy that sustains it”. Recognizing this, recovery plans should be developed within the current legislative and policy framework. For example, recovery plan recommendations should strive to avoid negative impacts to AAC’s where possible. To achieve this various measures could be prescribed such as the re-assignment of biodiversity across the landscape, caribou friendly access management plans, spatial assignment of mature retention requirements in caribou corridors/core habitat etc.

It is anticipated that the development and implementation of a local recovery plan will be a long-term undertaking, possibly over the next 20 years.