Protected Areas - Canada

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Environment Canada's protected areas are prescribed a legal framework to facilitate the protection of wildlife and their habitat. Established according to biological criteria, these protected areas are primarily created for the purpose of conservation. Management activities may include interventions such as habitat restoration and investigative research projects on species and habitat. By conserving these habitats, Environment Canada's protected areas help ensure that wildlife species do not become at risk, thereby preserving biodiversity at regional, national and even international scales. Canada's protected areas represent a significant contribution to the protection of global biodiversity. There are over 4000 publicly and privately managed protected areas in Canada. Although "parks" are the most common type, protected areas are divided among more than 100 different types, ranging from ecological reserves and wilderness areas to community parks and conservation zones. Environment Canada's network of protected areas totals over 12.4 million hectares, with more than 85% of the network classified as wilderness areas under the IUCN protected areas management system. The Environment Canada's network of protected areas consist of 54 National Wildlife Areas and 92 Migratory Birds.

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