The Saskatchewan and federal government are making a 64-million-dollar land swap.
Environment Canada acquires 800 square kilometres of the Govenlock, Nashlyn and Battle Creek pastures in southwest Saskatchewan.
In return, the province acquires federal lands and fencing, barns and corrals of of equal value in 55 former federal community pastures which have transitioned to producer control.
Federal agriculture minister Marie-Claude Bibeau says the land is protected for species at risk and ranchers continue to use the land for grazing cattle.
She says the federal program is part of a goal to protect 25 percent of Canadian land by 2025.
Saskatchewan agriculture minister David Marit says patrons of the pasture are the best stewards for the land and will continue to have long-term leases.
The area is home to ten species at risk including the Swift Fox, the Sage Grouse, Burrowing Owl and Ferruginous Hawk.