Purcells-South mountain caribou herd augmentation project, 2011-12

Event Type: 
GNLCC Webinar
Date and Time: 
Aug 15, 2012 (All day)

Time: 12:00-1:30 PM Mountain Time

Presenters: Steve Gordon, Mark Williams, and Leo DeGroot, British Columbia Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations

Summary: The 2007 Mountain Caribou Recovery Implementation Plan (MCRIP) committed the British Columbia Government to several management actions including augmenting specific, high-priority smaller herds with caribou from larger, more robust herds. The Purcells-South mountain caribou herd in the Kootenay Region has a current population estimated at 14 animals and has been identified as a priority for augmentation. Direct augmentation by trans-locating animals from a donor herd is considered the best opportunity to assist recovery; failure to implement an effective translocation program in the near-term will likely lead to extirpation of the Purcells-South herd.

As part of the British Columbia Government’s commitment to recover mountain caribou to pre-1995 levels by 2017, 19 caribou were translocated from the Level-Kawdy herd in north-western British Columbia to the Purcell Mountains in south-eastern British Columbia in March 2012. This is the first phase of a 2 year project to move 40 caribou to the Purcells-South herd. This webinar will detail the various phases of the project, lessons-learned, and highlight some of the challenges of wild ungulate translocations.