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Woodland Caribou Range Plans and Assessment

Saskatchewan's woodland caribou program is made up of two key components:

  • Woodland caribou range assessment, which enhances our understanding of woodland caribou populations and their interactions with the environment; and
  • Woodland caribou range planning and implementation that provides a framework, strategies and objectives that guide habitat management decisions to achieve and maintain self-sustaining caribou populations.

Through the woodland caribou program, the province is:

  • Gaining a better understanding of woodland caribou ecology;
  • Working toward meeting objectives identified in provincial and federal strategies; and
  • Improving how the province manages woodland caribou and related habitat.

A woodland caribou range assessment is the process of determining and monitoring the status of caribou populations and their habitat. It provides important data for range planning and evaluation. Saskatchewan is working with universities, industry and First Nations and Métis communities to learn more about our woodland caribou. This information helps determine the status and trend of woodland caribou populations and the areas that contain the highest quality potential habitat.

Saskatchewan's woodland caribou range is divided into two conservation units, based on the ecozone boundaries of the boreal shield (SK1) and the boreal plain (SK2). The SK2 woodland caribou conservation unit is further divided into three administrative units: SK2 East, SK2 Central and SK2 West (Figure 1).

As of November 2023, caribou populations are stable in SK1 and declining in SK2 Central. Data collection for population trend assessments for SK2 West and SK2 East was completed in 2022, with anticipated results in 2023.

Map of Woodland caribou conservation and administration units in Saskatchewan with a legend that shows the Taiga Shield, Boreal Shield, Boreal Plain and Prairie Ecozones

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