We Stand for Wildlife



Double Your Impact on Wildlife Conservation and Climate Action

Get your donations matched Today!



Reflecting on Canadian Mountain Network’s Knowledge Sharing Summit 2023

Cheyenne MacDonald, L'nua'tikete'w/Indigenous Relations Associate, with WCS Canada, shares highlights and inspiration from the Canadian Mountain Network’s Braiding Knowledge Sharing Summit.

Read more

After burn

The new face of fire is putting wildlife on the hot seat.

Read more at Canadian Geographic
WCS Canada scientists get their boots muddy studying wildlife and wild places across Canada in hopes of spurring action to address our growing biodiversity crisis.

Saving Species at the Edge of Extinction

When we wipe out a species, it is not only the loss of something unique. The biodiversity that humans depend on to survive is also eroded.

WCS Canada's Director of National Conservation, Daniel Kraus, said there is no real choice. “Ensuring clean water and clean air, and diverse and abundant wildlife, is not really a trade-off because if we lose all of those things, we lose the foundation for economy and society.”

Read more

Next steps for Canada: Developing a plan to end biodiversity loss

Helping steer 196 countries to arrive at a consensus agreement for “halting and reversing biodiversity loss” was no small accomplishment for Canadian representatives at the Convention on Biodiversity (CBD) negotiations in Montreal this past December.  But now the even more challenging work of implementing the agreement has begun with the official launch on May 15th of Canada’s consultation on a 2030 Biodiversity Strategy for Canada.

Halting and reversing biodiversity loss is not going to be an easy or straightforward task.  But just as with climate, it is vital that we reset our relationship with the natural world before it is too late.

Read more

Latest publications

Once upon a time in Mexico: Holocene biogeography of the spotted bat (Euderma maculatum)
Holocene-era range expansions are relevant to understanding how a species might respond to the warming and drying climates of today. The harsh conditions of North American deserts have phylogenetically structured desert bat communities but differences in flight capabilities are expected to affect their ability to compete, locate, and use habitat in the face of modern climate change. A highly vagile but data-deficient bat species, the spotted bat (Euderma maculatum), is thought to have expanded its range from central Mexico to western Canada during the Holocene. With specimens spanning this latitudinal extent, we examined historical demography, and used ecological niche modeling (ENM) and phylogeography (mitochondrial DNA), to investigate historic biogeography from the rear to leading edges of the species’ range. The ENM supported the notion that Mexico was largely the Pleistocene-era range, whereas haplotype pattern and Skyline plots indicated that populations expanded from the southwestern US throughout the Holocene. This era provided substantial gains in suitable climate space and likely facilitated access to roosting habitat throughout the US Intermountain West. Incongruent phylogenies among different methods prevented a precise understanding of colonization history. However, isolation at the southern-most margin of the range suggests a population was left behind in Mexico as climate space contracted and are currently of unknown status. The species appears historically suited to follow shifts in climate space but differences in flight behaviors between leading edge and core-range haplogroups suggest range expansions could be influenced by differences in habitat quality or climate (e.g., drought). Although its vagility could facilitate response to environmental change and thereby avoid extinction, anthropogenic pressures at the core range could still threaten the ability for beneficial alleles to expand into the leading edge.
Nesting Ecology of the Barn Swallow on Agriultural Lands in Yukon
ince the 1980s, the abundance of the Barn Swallow (Hirundo rus-tica) in North America, including the far north, has declined. To better understand the species’ biology north of 60° N, near the northern limit of its range, and in a region of expanding agriculture, we studied its nesting ecology on farms in southern Yukon Territory, Canada, in 2019 and 2020. We followed 21 attempted nests in 2019, 20 in 2020, of which 52% and 60%, respectively, were inside buildings with permanently open entrances. Other nests were built on the outside of buildings. In both years we inferred successful double brooding by three pairs, which is rarely reported north of 60°N latitude. We found the swallows’ reproductive output to be similar to that at temperate latitudes: first clutches ranged from three to six eggs (mean 4.8 in 2019; 4.2 in 2020); second clutches may have averaged marginally smaller (n = 6). The mean number of fledglings per nest was 3.3 in 2019 and 3.0 in 2020. Twenty-one percent of nests failed, either by falling off a vertical substrate or because of predation by deer mice (Peromyscus spp.), Black-billed Magpies (Pica hudsonia), or domestic cats. We also compared the air temperatures at nests, usually near building roofs, to ambient temperatures, finding them on average 1.6°C warmer than temperatures outside buildings. We set out 33 platforms and 20 wooden cups designed for Barn Swallow nesting but over the two years of our study the birds did not use any of them.
Microbial isolates with Anti‑Pseudogymnoascus destructans activities from Western Canadian bat wings
Forsythe, A. et al. (incl. Lausen, C.L.). 2022. Scientific Reports 12:9895
Efficacy and ethics of intensive predator management to save endangered caribou
Johnson, C.J., Ray, J.C and St-Laurent, M-H. 2022. Conservation Science and Practice e12729
Developing a national level evidence-based toolbox for addressing freshwater biodiversity threats
Reid et al. (incl. O'Connor, C.M.). 2022. Biological Conservation 269:109533
Coupling validation effort with in situ bioacoustic data improves estimating relative activity and occupancy for multiple species with cross-species misclassifications
Stratton, C. et al (incl. Lausen, C. and Rae, J. ). 2022. Methods in Ecology and Evolution. 2022;00:1-16.
Quantifying firebrand production and transport using the acoustic analysis of in-fire cameras.
Quantifying firebrand production and transport using the acoustic analysis of in-fire cameras. Thompson, D. K. et al. (incl. Yip, D.A.) Fire Technology
Activity, heart rate, and energy expenditure of a cold-climate mesocarnivore, the Canada lynx
Menzies, A. et al. (incl. Seguin, J.). 2022 Canadian Journal of Zoology

Email from:
Email to:

The person you email to will see the details you enter in the Form field and will be given you IP address for auditing purposes


WCS Canada newsletter

WCS Canada's newsletters have stories about our scientists in the field, interesting insights about wildlife and important conservation alerts.

Sign up to stay in touch!

Latest policy comments

Letter to Prime Minister re IAA amendments
Expert letter regarding strengthening federal impact assessment and regulatory efficiency, with recommendations on amendments to the Impact Assessment Act (2019) following the Supreme Court of Canada’s recent opinion on the constitutionality of the Impact Assessment Act. A majority of the Court identified four elements of the Act that require amendment in order to bring the Act into conformity with the Constitution. We believe that these amendments can be drafted in a way that largely preserves informed decision making and helps Canada contribute to sustainability and meet its climate and biodiversity targets.
WCS Canada comments on “Proposed regulations under the Mining Act for recovery of minerals” (ERO number 019-7724)
Our main recommendation for the recovery of minerals is that these operations are held to the same standards as other active mining operations. The recovery of minerals is a promising approach to reduce the environmental impact of the mining industry by meeting the demand for minerals while reducing the need for new mines. However, there are still environmental and health risks associated with various processes used for recovering minerals from tailings. Therefore, there needs to be assurance that there will not be unacceptable environmental and social risk of recovery of minerals, or unacceptable financial liability for the public associated with cleaning up any damages associated with recovering minerals from tailings if companies fail in their obligations for adequate mine closure. We recommend that recovery of minerals from tailings be held to the same standards as other active mining operations, including requiring: 1) Feasible closure plans that minimize environmental, health, and social risks, and meet clear standards for rehabilitation; 2) Assurances that companies will be responsible for the cost of clean-up; and 3) Transparency and accountability in the process of setting and meeting these standards.
WCS Canada comments on Canada Gazette Part 1 Volume 157 Number 25 Regulations, 24-07-2023
WCS Canada’s response to the public consultation conducted by Canadian Wildlife Service on the Regulations Amending the Wild Animal and Plant Trade Regulations regarding the international trade of elephant ivory and rhinoceros horn.

Email from:
Email to:

The person you email to will see the details you enter in the Form field and will be given you IP address for auditing purposes

Contact us

For general email inquiries: wcscanada@wcs.org
For fundraising inquiries: supportwcscanada@wcs.org
For media inquiries: canadamedia@wcs.org

For more information, visit our Contact Us page. 

Photo credits: Banner | Susan Morse © News | Mountain landscape: Susan Morse ©,  River: Maitland Conservation Authority ©, Caribou: Don Reid © WCS Canada, Peatlands: Mike Oldham  | Bat with WNS © NPS/Creative Commons License  | Mosaic: Northern Mountains: Hilary Cooke © WCS Canada, Wolverine: Susan Morse ©. Brook Trout: Engbretson Underwater Photography ©, Bat: Cory Olson ©, Wild Places: Hilary Cooke © WCS Canada, Ontario River: Constance O'Connor © WCS Canada, Caribou: Susan Morse © | Black-capped chickadee © Malcolm Boothroyd | Yukon mining: Chrystal Mantyka-Pringle © WCS Canada.