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Trilateral Island Initiative


Under the umbrella of the Trilateral Committee, the purpose of the Trilateral Island Initiative is to promote collaboration on the conservation and restoration of island ecosystems and their adjacent coastal and marine environments in North America. The Trilateral Island Initiative is focusing efforts on invasive species, biosecurity, restoration, local communities, and climate change. The Trilateral Island Initiative has the following goals: 1) Strengthen on-the-ground conservation and restoration of islands and their surrounding marine waters, 2) Improve coordination on island-related natural resource issues of mutual interest, 3) Strengthen institutional capacities, and 4) Improve efficiencies and increase success of island-related conservation projects. 

For highlights of the Trilateral Island Initiative, please see the following Annual Reports:




The Trilateral Committee Endorses the Conservation and Restoration of the Insular Ecosystems of Mexico, the United States of America and Canada

L. Wein - Parks Canada, A. Aguirre - GECI, S. Milburn-Hopwood - CWS, G. Seutin - Parks Canada, J. Maksabedian de la Roquette-SEMARNAT, D. Ashe - USFWS, G. Howald - IC and A. Little - USFWS attend the 2014 Trilateral Committee Meeting - Letter of Intent Signing Ceremony. (Photo credit: Eduardo Inego-Elias)

A new agreement among México, Canada and the United States to protect fragile island ecosystems and its imperiled species was signed on May 28, 2014 by the Secretaría de Medio Ambiente y Recursos Naturales, Parks Canada Agency and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service at a ceremony in Querétaro, México. This agreement, endorsed under the scope of the Trilateral Committee for Wildlife and Ecosystem Conservation and Management, seeks to strengthen the ongoing collaboration between México, Canada and the United States on the conservation, restoration and sustainable use of islands. Activities under this agreement include sharing expertise, technology and lessons learned, building institutional capacity, and leveraging funding and support.

The Secretaría de Medio Ambiente y Recursos Naturales, the Parks Canada Agency, and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service are signatories to the document and will serve as lead agencies within their respective countries.  Other federal agencies including Instituto Nacional de Ecología y Cambio Climático, Comisión Nacional para el Conocimiento y Uso de la Biodiversidad, Comisión Nacional de Áreas Naturales Protegidas, U.S. National Park Service, U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, and U.S. Bureau of Land Management will help advance the agreement.

The islands of North America are recognized for their exceptionally high levels of biodiversity. Unfortunately, biodiversity loss on islands occurs at an alarming rate with approximately 80 percent of known species extinctions having occurred on islands. Islands are vulnerable to threats such as climate change, invasive species, human disturbance, habitat loss, marine pollution and unsustainable practices.

For more information on this agreement, please select the following links.

The Letter of Intent in the Subject Matter of Conservation and Restoration of the Insular Ecosystems of the Mexico United States, United States of America and Canada

Carta de Intención en Materiá de Conservación y Restauración de los Ecosistemas Insulares de los Estados Unidos Mexícanos, de los Estados Unidos de América y de Canadá



Some of the successful efforts currently underway include the Seabird Restoration on the Baja California Pacific Islands, Mexico Project and the SGiN Xaana Sdiihltl'lxa: Night Birds Returning Project.

California Brown Pelican (Photo credit: GECI)Seabird Restoration on the Baja California Pacific Islands, Mexico - This bilateral 5-year project restores seabirds and their habitats on 7 Baja California Pacific Islands islands. The funding is provided by the Montrose and Luckenbach Trustee Councils. The Seabird Restoration on the Baja California Pacific Islands, Mexico project is being implemented by Grupo de Ecología y Conservación de Islas in collaboration with U.S. experts, such as the Cornell Lab and Audubon Society.  Read more . . .



Ancient Murrelet (Photo credit:  Ian Jones)

Night Birds Returning, Canada - This trilateral project was jointly launched by Parks Canada and the Haida Nation in 2009 to restore nesting seabird habitat throughout the national park reserve.  In September 2013, Parks Canada led the implementation of this project in partnership with the U.S. and Mexico.  Read more . . .








National Fish and Wildlife Foundation  





Canada: Patrick Nantel, Parks Canada

Mexico: Humberto Berlanga, The National Commission for Knowledge and Use of Biodiversity (CONABIO) 

United States: Annie Little, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service