Great Scott!

There are only two days left to write a letter of feedback to Environment Canada telling them why we need marine protection for the Scott Islands. The archipelago of islands are home to over two million seabirds at certain times of the year, but these birds are not the only ones these islands are critically important to.

The Scott Islands are the site of the largest Steller sea lion rookery (breeding ground) in Canada, and the second largest in the world. The largest of the sea lion species, male Steller sea lions can grow to be a whooping 800kg!

Sometimes confused with seals, you can recognize a sea lion by its larger size, the presence of external earflaps, and their amazing ability to ‘walk’ on land.  Sea lions have longer front flippers and the ability to rotate their hind flippers forward, underneath their big bodies, allowing them to ‘walk’ on all fours. You would not guess it if you have seen a lazy-looking group basking in the sun on the rocks but this allows them to be a lot quicker and more agile when on land, especially compared to a belly-sliding seal.

Steller sea lions are large, loud (seriously, these guys can roar!), and listed as a species of special concern under Canada’s Species At Risk Act (SARA). Other species listed, such as sea otters and short-tailed albatross, also rely on this island chain and it’s surrounding waters.

Any species listed under SARA is illegal to kill, harass, capture or harm in any way and its habitats are also protected. Now SARA itself is at risk, potentially leaving the hundreds of species listed under it vulnerable.

Starting May 22nd, Canadians have been speaking out to “S.O.S. - Save Our SARA!” and you can add your voice to those that are calling on the federal government to spare SARA from being cut and instead fully implementing the Act.

A marine National Wildlife Area (mNWA) around the Scott Islands will protect critical ocean habitat for many species including the Steller sea lion and SARA includes further protection from harm to this and many more species.

Speak out now to save SARA and support the Scott Islands mNWA!