Contrary to the popular belief the snakes of Canada are shy and therefore do not pose any threat to the inhabitants. The Rattlesnake is the only species of snake in Canada that is considered to be dangerous and therefore pose threat. Out of the 25 species which are found in Canada none is considered to be fatal and therefore they are protected by law and the related organization. The Timber Rattlesnake is the only snake that has been annihilated and it is all because of the threat which it poses to humans. Most of the snakes in Canada are very shy and try to avoid human contact. Most of the snakes of Canada are non-venomous and therefore killing them is prohibited by law completely.
Important snake species
Coastal Rubber Boa
Most of the snakes of this class are very small in size and therefore they are not visible generally. The size is 38 – 84 cm which is small as compared to the other snake species in Canada. The overall look of the snake is rough and the skin consists of scales, the skin has wrinkles and the overall skin is smooth when it comes to this reptile. The rubber boas are identified with their short tail and the flat head which is just as the size of the body. There are other species of the snake which are not to be confused such as northern rubber boa which is same in appearance but the characteristics are completely different.
The ventral scales of the snake are the ones which identify them. The eyes are large and have black masks. These snakes are mostly found in Ontario and they are considered to be the largest ones in Canada. The largest snake of this species was captured on Pelee Island which was 138 cm in length.
Snake protection organizations
Canadian Herpetological Society
The society is of the view that the declines in the snakes and the related species is all because of the snake diseases and other habitats attack. The ecological system of the country is changing dramatically and it is affecting the world over. The society takes all the necessary measures to make sure that the snakes are preserved as much as possible. The workshops, seminars and the walks are conducted to create awareness among the general public. The society is a strong supporter of SARA which stands for Species at Risk Act. This act protects the snakes of Canada legally.
It is regarded as one of the largest organizations in Canada which protect the snakes and the related system in which they live in. The organization is of the view that the ecological system of Canada is being affected by the decline in snake number and necessary measures should be taken to prevent this from happening. The pollution, invasive species, urban development, and disease are cited as the main sources by the organization responsible for the snake annihilation. Apart from snakes the organization also looks after other reptiles which are in danger.
The federal government in Canada has released a plan for the protection of the caribou population of the country which was released last week. The development comes following the legal action initiated by the Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society against the environment minister Catherine McKenna. In the lawsuit, they charged the government for not being transparent and holding information about the status of caribou protection. The minister should have submitted reports on the particular caribou herds which are unprotected to create transparency in the system.
But what comes from the government lacks credibility and does not answer the concerns raised by the environment group. The plan still does not leave any room for disclosing if the caribou herds are protected and the steps taken for their protection.
Instead, it lays down the objectives and timeline for caribou recovery for the provincial and federal governments. It is noted in the plan that the provincial and territorial governments are primarily responsible for the regions where caribou populations can be traced.
The provincial governments would be in control to develop suitable protection plans for each particular range under them and carry them out. It also provides room for extensive research and the ways of implementation of plans are a priority for further studies.
According to the Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society, the plan released by the government will not tell the citizens about the steps taken to conserve the herds that are not already covered by any kind of protection. The first step for an effective conservation program is identifying whether protection is required and then reporting the progress of the process to determine the results. But the plan lacks this aspect and seems to come in a hurry from the government.
The Canada’s 51 woodland caribou population has been declining by over 80% according to a 2015 federal assessment. It is predicted that the population will face the further decline of 30% in the coming years. There are various reasons for the situation including loss of habitat, wildfires, forestry and energy projects. The extent of each of the threats needs to be determined before protection plans could be worked out for them.
The Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society is determined to continue their legal proceeding against the federal government until they are fully satisfied by the efforts. According to a spokesperson of the organization, there are several gaps still existing in the plan and it does not really seem to be a genuine effort by the government.
Also, not all states are able to comply with the plan. Alberta Environment and Parks in Ottawa have their own local range plans for the communities which have been found to produce better results. It also has to be noted that each local range in different and a single solution for conservation is not possible.