In DepthConservation

To save caribou, Alberta wants to fence them in

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Science  22 Jul 2016:
Vol. 353, Issue 6297, pp. 333
DOI: 10.1126/science.353.6297.333

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An imperiled caribou herd in western Alberta province in Canada could become a high-profile test case for a controversial plan to save some of Canada's woodland caribou from extinction: herding them into pens enclosing 100 square kilometers or more and ringed with electric fences, and killing or removing every predator inside. The approach, proposed last month by Alberta's government, is an attempt to arrest the decline of the animals, threatened by development and preyed on by wolves. But some caribou advocates are skeptical that the expensive pens will work. They also fear that the strategy, which the energy industry has helped fund, will undermine efforts to curb habitat destruction.