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Mount Robson Provincial Park Ecosystem Management Plan

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Fire suppression to promote old forest habitat ... Assessment of old forest habitat. Complete lack of fire suppression, topography should halt spread ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Mount Robson Provincial Park Ecosystem Management Plan


1
Mount Robson Provincial Park Ecosystem Management
Plan
  • Rebecca Boronowski
  • Brett DeGregorio
  • Isaac Paulman

2
Framework
  • Description of the Ecosystem Management plan
  • Need for plan
  • Description of park
  • Goals and objectives
  • Constraints to management
  • Four Ecosystem management zones (EMZs)
  • Actions already taken

3
Framework cont….
  • Management Plan Critique
  • 12 criteria influenced by Grumbine (1994)
  • Scoring system from 1-10
  • Pros and Cons with regard to each ecosystem
    management theme
  • Summary

4
The Need for this Plan
  • To adapt the BC Parks Master Plan to Mount Robson
    Provincial Park in order to meet specific
    objectives

5
Description of the Park
  • Located on West slope of Canadian Rockies in
    British Columbia adjacent to the Alberta border
  • Encompasses 219,534 Ha.
  • Comprises 4 biogeoclimatic Zones
  • Alpine tundra
  • Englemannn Spruce-Subalpine Fir
  • Sub-Boreal Spruce
  • Interior Cedar Hemlock

6
Description of the Park cont…
  • Designated as a World Heritage Site by the United
    Nations
  • Large tracts of even aged lodgepole pines
  • Regeneration from burning of railroad
    construction from 1913-1915

7
Management Goals and Objectives
  • To provide an area for the conservation of
    biological diversity of natural forested and
    non-forested ecosystems
  • To permit natural disturbance regimes such as
    fire and beetle epidemics to proceed unimpeded

8
Constraints to Management
  • Conservation of Biological Diversity
  • Protection of critical wildlife habitats,
    habitats of endangered/threatened plants and
    animals, important old forest areas,
    ecologically-significant vegetation, and
    maintainance and creation of target seral stage
    distributions
  • Adjacency Issues
  • Consideration of management objectives of
    neighbors such as Robson Valley Forest District,
    Jasper National Park, and adjacent timber lands

9
Constraints to Management cont…
  • Recreation and Visitor Management Objectives
  • Visitor safety, protection of cultural and
    heritage resources, maintenance of water quality,
    and considerations for viewscapes

10
The Management Plan
  • Divide the park into 4 ecosystem management zones
    (EMZs)
  • Suppression Zone (EMZ1)
  • Prescription Zone (EMZ2)
  • Natural Zone (EMZ3)
  • Travel Corridor (EMZ4)
  • Boundaries delineated using topographic features
    and encompassing areas of similar vegetative
    features

11
The Management Plan
  • Each of the four EMZs managed with four main
    objectives in mind
  • Biodiversity Conservation
  • Forest Fire
  • Forest Health
  • Wildlife

12
Management of the Suppression Zone Goals
Action
  • Establish Old Forest Stands
  • Complete Fire Suppression
  • Full fire suppression
  • Reduction of fuel loads
  • Contain and confine all fires
  • Education programs for visitors
  • Low intensity surface burns
  • Manipulation of tree species composition

13
Management of the Prescription Zone Goals
Action
  • Provide summer and winter habitat for endangered
    caribou
  • Provide habitat for many species of ungulates
  • Prevent mountain pine beetle epidemics from
    spreading out of the park
  • Fire suppression to promote old forest habitat
  • Using prescribed burns to avoid large natural
    fires and beetle outbreaks

14
Management of the Natural Zone Goals
Actions
  • Allow natural disturbance processes to occur
    unchecked
  • Halt beetle outbreaks
  • Assessment of old forest habitat
  • Complete lack of fire suppression, topography
    should halt spread
  • Early detection and suppression
  • Inventory area and distribution of old forest

15
Management of the Travel Corridor Goals
Actions
  • Stop spread of fire throughout corridor
  • Control animal movements
  • Establish network of fire weather stations and
    monitor fire weather
  • Vegetation manipulation, fencing, and reflectors
    to avoid animal- car collisions

16
Management of the Travel Corridor cont…. Goals
Actions
  • Stop spread of non-natives
  • Contain large scale beetle outbreaks while
    allowing small outbreaks to proceed
  • Development of eradication programs
  • Early detection and use of pheremones with single
    tree and other silvicultural treatments.
  • Allow forest to progress to beetle resistant
    stages

17
Proposed Implementation
  • Conduct inventories of rare or endangered species
    within the park
  • Create and utilize spatial information to
    identify critical wildlife habitat
  • Determine current levels of non-native vegetation
    along ROWs
  • Develop and carry out eradication methods
  • Reduce ignitions and forest stand fuels by
    manipulating composition and structure around
    high use areas
  • Establish fire weather stations

18
Proposed Implementation
  • Develop prescribed burn implementation and
    research program
  • Ongoing surveillance of pest outbreaks
  • Increased public awareness of forest health
    issues
  • More precisely determine winter habitat
    requirements for caribou
  • Reduce ungulate use of forests near highways
  • Sware-flex reflectors/one way fencing
  • Decrease attractive vegetation
  • Plant palatable vegetation along gas line ROWs

19
Action Thus Far
  • Installation of two fire weather stations near
    Park Headquarters and in Upper Fraser Watershed
    (99)
  • Allowing Brule fire (205 Ha) in 96
  • Winter habitat assessment for mountain caribou
    (98)
  • Allowing the Moose fire (2500 Ha) in 98
  • Installation of Sware-flex wildlife reflectors
  • Completion of a preliminary rare and endangered
    vascular plan species inventory in 99
  • Aerial mountain pine beetle mapping and ground
    surveys in 99
  • Fire management plan in 2000

20
Ecosystem Critique
  • The plan presented was an adequate ecosystem
    management plan that we believe would
    successfully, yet not perfectly, meet the goals
    and the objectives of the park
  • We developed critique criteria of our own, that
    was influenced by Grumbines (1994) dominant
    themes of ecosystem management, to evaluate this
    management plan as a truly successful ecosystem
    management plan
  • We used 12 grading criteria and scored each theme
    on a scale of 1-10

21
Ecosystem Patterns and Processes Score 10
-
  • Effort to keep disturbance regimes as natural as
    possible
  • Managed for Mountain pine beetle (MPB) and fire
    disturbances
  • Made no mention of possible implications of
    management techniques of distribution and
    occurrence of small scale disturbances such as
    wind and ice

22
Interagency Cooperation Score 9 -
  • The plan recommends cooperation with 11 different
    organizations and industries
  • Doesnt mention cooperation with adjacent timber
    industry landowners
  • Only makes recommendations for cooperation,
    doesnt go any further

23
Humans as a Part of Nature Score 9 -
  • Management is guided by differing recreation
    levels throughout the park
  • Safety and aesthetics are constantly considered
  • Safety along highway and railroad right of ways
    is a dominant concern throughout the plan
  • Does not take into account the effects of
    management on ecosystem processes

24
Ecological Boundaries Score 8 -
  • Plan takes into account adjacent parks and timber
    lands
  • Plan creates corridors for species travel into
    and out of park boundaries
  • Plan takes into account spread of disturbances
    over park boundaries
  • No mention of the role Alberta will play in
    management of the park
  • No mention of the management of the adjacent
    landowners

25
Data Collection Score 8 -
  • Calls for implementation of weather stations
  • Calls for complete plant and animal inventories
  • Calls for research into ungulate-habitat
    relationships
  • Effectiveness of sware reflectors
  • Comprehensive BMP mapping
  • Habitat assessment
  • Studies of highway ROW mortality
  • Lack current data

26
Adaptive Management Score 7 -
  • Provides for monitoring
  • EMZ boundaries may be changed if necessary
  • No mention of accountability
  • No time scale to measure success on
  • No mention of alternatives

27
Hierarchical Context Score 6 -
  • Landscape level, takes into account adjacent
    landowners
  • Ecosystems, EMZ based upon ecosystem boundaries
  • Population, ungulate populations considered
  • No mention of fine scale management, from stand
    level on down

28
Values Score 6 -
  • Safety and recreation always considered
  • Aesthetics important
  • Education important
  • No stakeholder input
  • No mention of what recreation is allowed within
    park

29
Viable Populations Score 5 -
  • Endangered Caribou and other ungulates (moose,
    elk, deer) receive considerable attention
  • Lodgepole pine forests also accounted for
  • No mention of other specific species within park
    or management for them
  • No mention of using caribou as indicators

30
Monitoring Score 5 -
  • MPB outbreaks
  • Cleaning of ROW reflectors
  • Redefinitions of BMP distributions, and hazard
    reassessments
  • Mention of who should do what
  • No clear section on monitoring
  • Control of invasives?
  • Indicator species?
  • Species inventories after management?
  • Maintanance of fire buffer strip?

31
Economic Feasibility and Sustainability
Score 2 -
  • No mention other than costly ROW management and
    reflectors
  • Mentions need for cost benefit analysis on ROW
    collissions
  • No mention of costs, short term or long term

32
Stakeholder Consideration Score 2 -
  • Protection and Aesthetics for recreationists
  • No public meetings
  • No mention of input from Alberta
  • No mention of support/opposition from public

33
Summary
  • The Mount Robson Provincial Park Management Plan
    very closely resembles an effective ecosystem
    management plan
  • Ahead of its time for 1996
  • Successfully satisfies most of Grumbines
    dominant themes for ecosystem management
  • Did not address certain areas such as stakeholder
    input and economic feasibility
  • Overall a very impressive plan that addresses
    most of the dominant themes of ecosystem
    management and meets with our approval.
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