Using Alternative Silvicultural Systems to Integrate Mountain Caribou and Timber Management in British Columbia
Keywords:Rangifer, caribou, logging, forest management, arboreal lichens
AbstractEven-aged forest management using the clearcutting silvicultural system as it is currently applied threatens mountain caribou habitat in British Columbia. Since neither complete preservation nor maximum development of timber resources are socially acceptable alternatives, forest managers are anxious to find integrated management options. We describe alternative silvicultural systems currently being tested, including single-tree and group selection. All the treatments have the goal of periodically extracting viable timber volumes while perpetually retaining stand characteristics necessary for caribou. The effects of these logging prescriptions on lichen biomass and growth rates are being tested. Alternative silvicultural systems may become part of a larger strategy to maintain caribou habitat in managed forests.
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