This year the walk is all about the species we carry with us every day - the loon, polar bear, caribou and beaver – iconic Canadian species that grace our currency and remind us even the smallest steps and contributions can make a difference for Canadian wildlife..
Donations received throughout activities in this campaign will be directed toward the Canadian Wildlife Foundation’s “Wild by Nature” initiative, a campaign designed to secure funding for critical CWF species at risk programs.
There are currently 715 species of plants and animals at risk of being lost forever from Canada. They're disappearing from our oceans, lakes, skies and landscape due to habitat loss, disease, climate change and unintentional mortality (such as collisions with windows and cars, fisheries bycatch, and more).
They're vanishing. But does anyone care? I know I do. I know you do. And thank goodness our hearts have enough room for these animals — large and small. Because they need people to give them a voice. To stand up for them. To walk for them.
This year, we're asking you to walk for wildlife — specifically we're asking you to walk on behalf of the winged wildlife that fill our skies and now our hearts. What winged creature will you walk for this year?
Conservation of polar bears requires international cooperation, as several populations are shared between countries and as problems such as contaminants and climatic change are affecting the whole Arctic. Since 1965, an international group of scientists specializing in studying polar bears has been coordinating research and management of polar bears throughout the Arctic under the auspices of the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (IUCN), also known as the World Conservation Union.
Loons are water birds like ducks, geese, and grebes, but they are classified separately by scientists. The five species are Red-throated Loon Gavia stellata, Pacific Loon Gavia pacifica, Arctic Loon Gavia arctica, Yellow-billed Loon Gavia adamsii, and Common Loon Gavia immer. The Common Loon is the species best known to most of us, as its breeding range lies across most of Canada.
Four subspecies of caribou occur in Canada: woodland (Rangifer tarandus caribou), Peary (Rangifer tarandus pearyi), barren-ground west of the Mackenzie River (Rangifer tarandus granti), also known as Grant’s caribou, and barren-ground east of the Mackenzie River (Rangifer tarandus groenlandicus). A fifth subspecies, Dawson’s or the Queen Charlotte Islands population of woodland caribou (Rangifer tarandus dawsoni), died out in the 1930s and was declared extinct in 1984.
The beaver Castor canadensis is the largest rodent in North America and the largest rodent in the world except for the capybara of South America. An adult weighs from 16 to 32 kg and, including its 30-cm tail, a large beaver may measure 1.3 m long.The beaver’s body is adapted in many ways to the animal’s watery habitat. The beady eyes see as well in the water as out of it thanks to a specialized transparent membrane that can be drawn over the eyes for protection while diving. The nostrils are small and can be closed for underwater swimming, as can the ears.