PLEASE NOTE: Not all COSEWIC reports are currently available on the SARA Public Registry. Most of the reports not yet available are status reports for species assessed by COSEWIC prior to May 2002. Other COSEWIC reports not yet available may include those species assessed as Extinct, Data Deficient or Not at Risk. In the meantime, they are available on request from the COSEWIC Secretariat.
The Western Waterfan is a leafy lichen that forms semi-erect, small rosettes that are attached to rocks by holdfasts. The lichen is olive-black and jelly-like when wet but slate gray to black and crisp when dry. The upper surface is smooth and dull, and the lower surface similar except for the presence of distinct pale veins. There are no vegetative propagules. The fruit bodies of this lichen are reddish-brown and contain sacks of colourless, elongate, ascospores. The photosynthetic partner is a cyanobacterium. The Western Waterfan is one of very few leafy lichens that can grow at or below water level.
This lichen is endemic to western North America. There are only five known occurrences in Canada, all in British Columbia, and two former occurrences appear to be extirpated. This lichen is unique in growing at or below water level in clear, permanent, unshaded alpine or subalpine streams. Habitat loss is likely to result from temperature increases caused by climate change. Because of that change, larger plant species currently below the subalpine zone will be able to grow at higher elevations. Subalpine meadows are therefore predicted to become increasingly colonized by shading vegetation. Also, increasing drought will transform permanent watercourses into ephemeral streams.
Under Canada’s Species at Risk Act (SARA), the foremost function of COSEWIC is to "assess the status of each wildlife species considered by COSEWIC to be at risk and, as part of the assessment, identify existing and potential threats to the species".
COSEWIC held two Wildlife Species Assessment Meetings in this reporting year (October, 2013 to September, 2014) from November 24 to November 29, 2013 and from April 27 to May 2, 2014. During the current reporting period, COSEWIC assessed the status or reviewed the classification of 56 wildlife species.
The wildlife species assessment results for the 2012-2013 reporting period include the following:
Special Concern: 20
Data Deficient: 0
Not at Risk: 1
Of the 56 wildlife species examined, COSEWIC reviewed the classification of 40 that had been previously assessed. The review of classification for 25 of those wildlife species resulted in a confirmation of the same status as the previous assessment.
The Government of Canada is committed to preventing the disappearance of wildlife species at risk from our lands. As part of its strategy for realizing that commitment, on June 5, 2003, the Government of Canada proclaimed the Species at Risk Act (SARA). Attached to the Act is Schedule 1, the list of the species provided for under SARA, also called the List of Wildlife Species at Risk. Extirpated, Endangered and Threatened species on Schedule 1 benefit from the protection of prohibitions and recovery planning requirements under SARA. Special Concern species benefit from its management planning requirements. Schedule 1 has grown from the original 233 to 521 wildlife species at risk.
Please submit your comments byApril 15, 2015, for terrestrial species undergoing normal consultationsand byOctober 15, 2015, for terrestrial species undergoing extended consultations.For a description of the consultation paths these species will undergo, please see:Species at Risk Public Registry website