Many countries, including Canada, are beginning to recognize the important roles of Indigenous Peoples in threatened species recovery. To determine whether official recognition is translating into actual involvement of Indigenous Peoples in species recovery planning in Canada, we examined recovery documents for species under the Canadian Species at Risk Act (SARA). We scored each document for the level of involvement with Indigenous Peoples on a scale of 0–5. We analyzed the data using permutation-based ANOVAs and post hoc pairwise permutation tests to determine the impact of region, taxonomic group, and responsible agency on scores. Fifty two percent of documents suggested no Indigenous involvement, despite a legal requirement to consult Indigenous Peoples to the extent possible. Documents for species in central Canada and Quebec indicated significantly lower involvement than in other regions. Documents for taxonomic categories such as mosses indicated lower involvement than those containing iconic and economically valuable taxa, such as fish and mammals. Documents coordinated by Environment and Climate Change Canada indicated significantly lower involvement than those coordinated by Parks Canada or Fisheries and Oceans Canada. These regional and taxonomic discrepancies, along with differences among agencies suggest short-term priorities for improving Indigenous Peoples’ involvement in species at risk recovery planning in Canada.

Aboriginal traditional knowledge (ATK), Co-management, Conservation, Consultation, Expert elicitation, Indigenous peoples, Species at risk act (SARA), Traditional ecological knowledge (TEK)
Environmental Science and Policy
Department of Biology

Hill, C.J. (Cassandra J.), Schuster, R. (Richard), & Bennett, J.R. (2019). Indigenous involvement in the Canadian species at risk recovery process. Environmental Science and Policy, 94, 220–226. doi:10.1016/j.envsci.2019.01.017