The Important Bird and Biodiversity Areas Program is a global initiative led by BirdLife International to conserve birds and their habitats. In Canada, Nature Canada and Bird Studies Canada co-deliver the program. Together with our partners we are achieving science-based, site specific conservation for birds and biodiversity.
Since 1996 we’ve identified nearly 600 IBAs across Canada’s diverse landscapes. Acting with regional conservation partners, we’ve built an exhaustive IBA database, finalized almost 100 site conservation plans, helped communities implement more than 150 local projects, and initiated a volunteer network of IBA Caretakers. Working in harmony with bird conservation efforts from local to international levels, Canada’s IBA Program has become a cornerstone in science-based, site-specific conservation for birds and biodiversity.
We work with all levels of government, including First Nations, to incorporate IBAs in land-use planning policies and engage corporations and private landowners to include IBAs in their decision-making. Since 2008, Canada’s IBAs have received over $7 million in support from the federal and provincial governments, private industry and foundations, First Nations communities, nature conservation groups and individual stewards. With our partners, we have developed protocols to track bird populations, implemented on-the-ground conservation activities, and empowered local groups to watch over and protect IBAs.
Canada’s IBA Program plays a critical role in national bird conservation efforts. Major support for the program comes from TransCanada Corporation, Wildlife Habitat Canada, and the Government of Canada. BirdLife International began the IBA program in Europe in the 1980s. Since that time, BirdLife partners in more than 178 countries and territories have joined together to build the global IBA network.