Biodiversity – Protected Areas
Québec geographical situation and the extent of its public land represent an invaluable source of biodiversity. To preserve this collective wealth, areas of variable extent are subject to legal or administrative protection. These measures are set up to protect habitats and a variety of other natural environments from being commercially exploited. Protected areas range in size from a few kilometers square, in the case of rare species or habitats, to thousands of kilometers square, in the case of national parks.
The ministère du Développement durable, de l'Environnement, de la Faune et des Parcs is the main manager of Québec's wildlife resources and habitats. Currently, Québec wildlife includes some 649 vertebrate species distributed in all animal groups, mammals, birds, fishes, amphibians, reptiles and turtles. In addition, numerous species of invertebrates are found in Québec. There are more than 30,000 insect species.
The Québec government committed itself to protect wildlife and plant species with the adoption in 1989 of the Act respecting threatened or vulnerable species (chapter E-12.01). In this context of the new wildlife and plant life protection responsibilities the ministère du Développement durable, de l’Environnement et des Parcs (MDDEP), set up the Centre de données sur le patrimoine naturel du Québec (CDPNQ).