Early Winter Habitat Use by Mountain Caribou in the North Cariboo and Columbia Mountains, British Columbia
Keywords:caribou, Rangifer, winter habitat, forest management, British Columbia
AbstractWinter habitat use was compared between two mountain caribou (Rangifer tarandus caribou) populations in British Columbia. Regional differences were apparent during November and December. Radio-collared caribou inhabiting the gentle plateaus of the northern Cariboo Mountains, near Prince George, B.C. primarily used mid-elevation balsam-spruce stands on moderate slopes (<30%). In contrast, radio-collared caribou in the North Columbia Mountains, near Revelstoke, B.C. used low elevation hemlock-cedar stands and relatively steeper slopes (>30%). To adequately address habitat requirements of caribou, forest management plans should incorporate varying regional and seasonal habitat use patterns. Hypotheses on observed differences in habitat use are discussed.
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