New Ontario Regulations for Lepidoptera

Chris J. Durden drdn at
Sat Aug 28 19:07:59 EDT 1999

Don Davis,
  Where oh where is the Canada of my youth. Surely there is no need to copy
the United States in the ridiculous regulation of non-vertebrate animals.
As long as there are massive spraying programs against non-vertebrate pests
such as spruce budworm, nothing is safe anyway. Restriction of the
activities of those who study biology serves no useful purpose other than
to perpetuate ignorance.
  There is no need to protect a species per se as we cannot regulate where
it goes. Habitats cannot be protected. Places where species and habitat
occur can be protected. Take *Pieris virginiensis* which I have collected
and studied in Quebec. In healthy habitat the species is abundant. There is
the factor of country people who collect "snicroute", the starchy, spicy
root of *Dentaria* for making pickles. On Ile Perrot at the mouth of the
Ottawa River in the late 1950's to early 1960's. The populations of *P.
virginiensis* accessible by road were kept reduced by collection of the
root of the foodplant. On islands in the Ottawa River that were accessible
only by canoe, the *P. virginiensis* populations were abundant, year after
  Protection of localities with bog habitat and bog specialist species such
as *Incisalia lanoraieensis* and *Proclossiana eunomia* are complicated by
regional degradation of habitat by polluted/"acid" rain. In the last 40
years I have seen good bog habitat destroyed by chemical loading from
polluted precipitation. This is true of the Mer Bleue and Alfred Bog near
Ottawa as well as Nomininge, Doncaster and other bogs in the Larentians. No
restriction on study or collection of the faunas of these places will save
them. This is true also of small kettle-hole bogs that are often filled
when housing is constructed nearby.
  Who is behind all this protection of invertebrates? Is it the animal
rights advocates? Where do they get their political clout? Have they
thought about the limits of their actions, or shall we all be wearing
respiratory masks when we are outside the house so we cannot accidentaly
inhale any blackfly or other living organism?
.........Chris Durden

At 08:48  28/08/99 GMT, you wrote:
>On January 1/99, the new Fish and Wildlife Conservation Act (1997) was
>proclaimed as law in Ontario. Under this Act, various species of
>invertebrates are now given protection, and activities pertaining to
>these species, such as capture and propagation, are regulated. We are
>just now learning how this Act impacts on lepidopterists and others in
>In fairness to those officials with our Ontario Ministry of Natural
>Resources  who must administer this Act, they are very supportive, eager
>to learn about what  invertebrate activities are taking place in
>Ontario, eager to receive recommendations for changes to the regulations
>to the Act.  Under Schedule 11 of the Act, some invertebrates are given
>"Specially Protected" status. As someone who regularly captures, rears
>and tags monarch butterflies, it has been necessary to obtain a Wildlife
>Scientific Collector's Authorization for this falls activities. It would
>seem that those who put Schedule 11 together did not consult with
>provincial entomologists (ie. Toronto Entomologists' Association).
>Ministry officials will be attending the next regular meeting of the
>Toronto Entomologists' Association at the Royal Ontario Museum in
>Toronto on Sept. 25th. Your comments and recommendations to this writer
>with regard  to improving this Act would be appreciated.
>Don Davis
>Toronto, ON
> Invertebrates and the Fish and Wildlife Conservation Act 1997
>The Fish and Wildlife Conservation Act 1997 received Royal Assent in
>1997 and was proclaimed into force January 1,1999.  This new Act
>replaced the
>Game and Fish Act and has implications for a wide group of individuals
>may be involved in activities or species that the Game and Fish Act did
>previously deal with such as butterflies.  Butterflies were totally
>unprotected under the Game and Fish Act.
>Butterflies listed as Specially Protected Invertebrates in Schedule 11
>of the
>Fish and Wildlife Conservation Act are as follows: Karner Blue, Monarch,
>Virginia White, Mottled Dusky Wing, Bog Elfin, Black Swallowtail, Giant
>Swallowtail, Old World Swallowtail, Pipevine Swallowtail, Spicebush
>Swallowtail, Tiger Swallowtail, and Zebra Swallowtail.
>Section 5 of the FWCA prohibits the hunting or trapping of specially
>protected invertebrates which essentially prohibits the taking of the
>listed butterflies for collecting purposes or any other purpose.
>Section 40 prohibits the keeping of live specially protected wildlife
>(includes butterflies) in captivity except under the authority of a
>and in accordance with the regulations.  Under the regulations a person
>is issued a zoo licence may keep live game wildlife and specially
>wildlife in captivity and also may buy, sell or propagate them.
>Sub-section 40 (2) (b) allows a person to keep a single game reptile,
>amphibian, specially protected mammal, specially protected reptile,
>protected amphibian or specially protected invertebrate in captivity for
>purposes of personal education.  This would allow an individual to keep
>butterfly of the species found in schedule 11(listed above).
>Subsection 40 (2) © allows a person to keep game wildlife or specially
>protected wildlife in captivity for any educational or scientific
>purpose or
>any other purpose with the authorization of the Minister.  This section
>allows for keeping wildlife in captivity for introduction and recovery
>programs and is also used in the case wildlife possessed prior to
>proclamation of the FWCA.  It could also apply to persons possessing
>butterflies for education etc.
>Section 45 of the FWCA prohibits the propagation of game wildlife or
>specially protected wildlife except under authority of a licence.  At
>present time, only the holder of a zoo licence is allowed to propagate
>specially protected invertebrates.
>Section 46 prohibits the release of game wildlife or specially protected
>wildlife that has been kept in captivity without the permission of the
>Section 48 prohibits the sale or purchase of game wildlife or specially
>protected wildlife without the authority of a licence.  At the present
>the only persons who can legally purchase and sell specially protected
>invertebrates are the holders of a zoo licence.
>Section 54 prohibits the release of wildlife or an invertebrate that has
>imported into Ontario or propagated from stock imported into Ontario
>the approval of the Minister. At the present time, an invertebrate that
>been imported into Ontario by a permit issued by
>CFIA under the Plant Protection Act is exempted from the requirement to
>receive Minister's approval before release.
>The FWCA closed a major loop hole in the previous legislation in that
>regulations pertaining to species native to Ontario that came from
>province or country were ruled by an Ontario Court of Appeal decision to
>outside the jurisdiction of the Game and Fish Act.  Clause 1(2)(d) of
>FWCA provides that species referred to in the act include animals,
>invertebrates or fish whether or not it originated in Ontario.
>It has become apparent after discussion with many different people over
>past few months that the restrictions and limitations contained in the
>and Wildlife Conservation Act and regulations have greatly impacted the
>activities of many  lepidopterists in Ontario.  There is provision
>however to
>provide a regulatory scheme with respect to specially protected
>(butterflies) which might address the majority of issues.
>Wildlife Branch
>Ontario Parks
>Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources
>Box 7000, 300 Water St.
>Peterborough, Ont. K9J 8M5

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