WCS Canada

Global Conservation

WCS Canada is built upon the legacy of WCS's global conservation network that has worked to save wildlife and wild places through field science-based programs since 1896.  In Canada, we fill a vital gap by providing valuable conservation science information drawn from in-depth field studies and other research to support critical ecosystem protection efforts.  Affiliated with the wider WCS conservation community, we can also tap into the work and expertise of the organization’s global and North American research, conservation and wildlife health programs, exchanging findings, best practices and innovative ideas with fellow researchers in 62 countries. Finally, WCS Canada supports the international work of many WCS projects around the world, some examples of which are below. 

Activities

Tigers

The tiger is endangered worldwide, and in many countries entire local populations have gone extinct. As ever-growing expanses of Asia are carved up for roads, farms, logging interests, and urban development, tigers are losing their natural habitats. In 1920, there were an estimated 100,000 tigers in the wild. Today, their numbers hover in the low thousands. WCS has long-standing conservation programs in nine countries where tigers live: Cambodia, China, India, Indonesia, Lao PDR, Malaysia, Myanmar, Russia, and Thailand. Our goal is to help save the populations of this big cat in the wild and improve their living conditions.
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Whales

In 1935 Charles H. Townsend, appointed Director of the New York City Aquarium in 1902, published 4 charts that show the location of over 50,000 whale captures, including sperm whales, northern and southern right whales, humpback whales and bowhead whales. The whale capture locations were taken from North American (“Yankee”) whaling vessel log books dating from 1761 to 1920. The charts and whale capture locations have been converted to digital formats to support future research.
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Big Cats

Around the world, big cats are among the most recognized and admired animals, at the top of their food chain. Yet all seven species of large cats are listed as Threatened or Near Threatened on the IUCN Red List, with the tiger and snow leopard in the Endangered category. In addition to habitat degradation and loss of prey, many of these iconic predators are hunted directly for their fur, bones, or other body parts. They are also threatened by conflicts with people—their need for large spaces leads them to move outside protected areas and become a real or perceived threat to local people and their livestock. Our goal is to ensure stable populations and stable ranges, including expanding protected areas. Tigers and lions, in particular, have suffered huge losses and our long-term objective is to support their recovery to ecologically sustainable levels.

Coral Reefs

Coral reefs are some the oldest and most diverse ecosystems on earth, hosting an incredible array of fish, invertebrates, and marine mammals as well as some of the most important primary producers on the planet – those organisms that provide nutrients at the beginning of the food chain. They also have substantial economic and cultural value. Yet today, they're in danger because of climate change, destructive fishing practices, and ocean acidification. WCS is heading a global collaboration to strengthen coral reef fisheries management and evaluate the impact of conservation investments around the world to study these sensitive areas. We are also studying the impact of coral reef change on the people who live among them and rely on them for their livelihoods. WCS aims to create marine protected areas in the places where they will do the most good. Read more>>>

Turtles

No other group of vertebrates is facing extinction like turtles. Nearly half of the 330 species are imminently threatened. Ten species have populations of less than 100 individuals. Habitat destruction, in particular the loss of wetlands, has caused many populations to decline to dangerously low levels. Recovery efforts are complicated by the international pet trade in the rarest species. These turtles fetch a high price, which makes it difficult for rural community members to pass on the economic windfall. They are traded for traditional medicine, meat, and ornamental use of their shells, and are threatened by the spread of new diseases. Our strategies to accomplish turtle conservation focus on reducing the number of adult turtles lost and increasing the number of young turtles entering into the population each year.

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Contact

WCS Canada
344 Bloor Street West, Suite 204 Toronto, Ontario, M5S 3A7
(416) 850-9038