Canadian provinces have failed to meet a federal deadline to release plans to protect caribou populations and their boreal forests habitats. In 2012, the federal government found 37 of Canada’s 51 boreal caribou herds were not self-sustaining, with wildlife scientists predicting they could decline by 30 per cent over the next 15 years. Provinces were given five years to develop habitat protection plans under Canada’s Species At Risk Act. The federal government emphasized that all caribou ranges should be at least 65 per cent undisturbed. The deadline set by the federal government was Oct. 5, 2017. So far, no province has publicly released a plan. Rachel Plotkin, with the David Suzuki foundation, called the failure to meet the federally-mandated deadline a “black eye” for Canada. “Immediate leadership is needed by the federal and provincial governments to reverse caribou decline” she said.