A sanctuary for Manitoba’s most threatened woodland caribou remains safe—for now. Thanks in large part to all the people who joined CPAWS’ quest, the Manitoba government has extended protection for the Amisk Park Reserve until 2028.
Industry is actively fighting to open the nearly 2,000 square kilometer reserve to mining, with the Manitoba Prospectors and Developers Association warning supporters that “our industry is an at-risk species” and declaring that mines are “as much a part of nature as the water and the animals.”
With pristine lakes, sandy ridges and the heaving shoulders of exposed rock which make our Precambrian Boreal Forest so beautiful, Amisk Park Reserve is the only existing protected area in the Churchill River Uplands ecoregion.
This critical wildlife habitat also offers strong potential for backcountry recreation and tourism due to its pristine state and proximity to Thompson.
Interim protection will allow the time needed to properly engage with local communities, stakeholders, and all Manitobans about how best to ensure caribou, migratory songbirds, and the vast array of wildlife that depend on this habitat can remain healthy forever.
Amisk Park Reserve is an intact habitat which begins just 90 kilometers north of Thompson.
It supports caribou, black bears, foxes, wolves, martens, beavers, muskrats and an incredible diversity of migratory birds.
Of Manitoba’s 15 woodland caribou ranges, the animals which live in this area (the Harding Range) are identified at highest risk.
Interim protection is extended until May 31, 2028.
Amisk Park Reserve straddles the traditional territories of Nisichawayasihk, Tataskweyak, and O-Pipon-Na-Piwin Cree Nations. The rights of First Nations and other Indigenous people to access this area for hunting, trapping, fishing and other traditional pursuits are respected by the park reserve status and would continue to be respected if a new protection designation is established.