The Subjugation of Canadian Wildlife
Failures of Principle and Policy
A wake-up call to reform conservation practices and policies and to recognize the value of wildlife in Canada before further extinction.
Hardly a day goes by without news of the extinction or endangerment of yet another animal species, followed by urgent but largely unheeded calls for action. An eloquent denunciation of the failures of Canada’s government and society to protect wildlife from human exploitation, Max Foran’s The Subjugation of Canadian Wildlife argues that a root cause of wildlife depletions and habitat loss is the culturally ingrained beliefs that underpin management practices and policies. Tracing the evolution of the highly contestable assumptions that define the human?wildlife relationship, Foran stresses the price wild animals pay for human self-interest. Using several examples of government oversight at the federal, provincial, and territorial levels, from the Species at Risk Act to the Biodiversity Strategy, Protected Areas Network, and provincial management plans, this volume shows that wildlife policies are as much ? or more ? about human needs, priorities, and profit as they are about preservation. Challenging established concepts including ecological integrity, adaptive management, sport hunting as conservation, and the flawed belief that wildlife is a renewable resource, the author compels us to recognize animals as sentient individuals and as integral components of complex ecological systems. A passionate critique of contemporary wildlife policy, The Subjugation of Canadian Wildlife calls for belief-change as the best hope for an ecologically healthy, wildlife-rich Canada.
"I can say without hesitation that The Subjugation of Canadian Wildlife will be an important contribution to this field. As someone who has been involved in wildlife management issues for several decades, I have not yet encountered a book that so beautifully and intelligently explains how the current system of thought and practice came to be. " Rob Laidlaw, biologist, author, and founder of Zoocheck
"This is a very important book. You have to ask yourself whether, if a large country like Canada, with a well educated population, generally inclined to look favourably on wildlife, cannot manage its wild species sustainably, what hope is there for the planet as a whole? The wake-up calls have been so loud, for so long, that our brains no longer hear them. Perhaps that is why Max Foran felt he had to adopt such a strident tone in this book. It is a very sobering read. " The Canadian Field-Naturalist
"Foran provides a detailed history of humans' treatment of animals; chapters evaluate Canada's "Species at Risk Act," killing rather than protecting apex predators, threats to terrestrial and marine habitats, and the importance of large, unfragmented protected areas. The text is exceptionally well documented with 54 pages of citations and a 65-page bibliography. The philosophy and biodiversity will be of interest to the general public, while the main narrative details will appeal primarily to conservation professionals. Recommended. " Choice