Executive Summary – Recovery Strategy for Bluehearts (Buchnera americana) in Ontario

Prepared by the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry. Adoption of the Recovery Strategy for the Bluehearts (Buchnera americana) in Canada (Environment Canada 2014).

The Endangered Species Act, 2007 (ESA) requires the Minister of Natural Resources and Forestry to ensure recovery strategies are prepared for all species listed as endangered or threatened on the Species at Risk in Ontario (SARO) List. Under the ESA, a recovery strategy may incorporate all or part of an existing plan that relates to the species.

Bluehearts (Buchnera americana) is listed as endangered on the SARO List. The species is also listed as endangered under the federal Species at Risk Act (SARA). Environment Canada prepared the Recovery Strategy for the Bluehearts in Canada in 2014 to meet its requirements under the SARA. This recovery strategy is hereby adopted under the ESA. With the additions indicated below, the enclosed strategy meets all of the content requirements outlined in the ESA.

The Critical Habitat section of the federal recovery strategy provides an identification of critical habitat (as defined under the SARA). Identification of critical habitat is not a component of a recovery strategy prepared under the ESA. However, it is recommended that the areas of critical habitat identified in the federal recovery strategy be considered when developing a habitat regulation under the ESA.

Executive Summary – Recovery Strategy for the Bluehearts (Buchnera americana) in Canada

Prepared by Environment Canada (2014).

Bluehearts (Buchnera americana) is a perennial herb with small purple flowers that appear between mid-July and early September. In Canada, the habitat occupied by Bluehearts can be characterized as moist, interdunal depressions or swales along the shores of southern Lake Huron. It has suffered continued population declines as a result of human activities, and is listed as endangered on Schedule 1 of the Species at Risk Act. There are only three known extant locations of Bluehearts in Canada (former Camp Ipperwash and Richmond Park; Pinery Provincial Park; and Ipperwash Beach).

Threats to Bluehearts include, but are not limited to: water level changes; fenced exclosures; detection and removal of unexploded explosive ordnance; cottage and residential development; harvesting; recreational activities; loss of pollinators; infrastructure and road construction; and invasive plants.

There are unknowns regarding the feasibility of recovery of Bluehearts. In keeping with the precautionary principle, this recovery strategy has been prepared as per section 41(1) of SARA, as would be done when recovery is determined to be feasible. Broad strategies to be taken to address the threats to the survival and recovery of Bluehearts are presented in the section on Strategic Direction for Recovery. The population and distribution objective is to maintain the current distribution of Bluehearts, and to maintain, or increase where biologically and technically feasible, the current abundance of Bluehearts at the known extant populations in Canada.

Critical habitat is fully identified for Bluehearts within this recovery strategy, based on the best available data. As additional information becomes available, additional critical habitat may be identified where sites meet the critical habitat criteria.

One or more action plans will be completed for Bluehearts by December 2020.