Forest Investment Account (FIA) - Forest Science Program
FIA Project S084000

    Quantitative synthesis of abundance, fall rates and decay rates of snags and down wood in BCs forests
 
Project lead: Bunnell, Fred (University of British Columbia)
Contributing Authors: Huggard, David J.; Kremsater, Laurie L.
Subject: Forest Investment Account (FIA), British Columbia
Series: Forest Investment Account (FIA) - Forest Science Program
Description:
Management of forests in such a way as to maintain streamwater quality is fraught with uncertainty from a stream ecosystem perspective. Although guidelines exist for buffer strip widths, road construction, and other forestry practices, different jurisdictions have different guidelines (e.g. Blinn and Kilgore 2001), and guidelines are often drafted with one stream ecosystem attribute in mind. Thus, in B.C., watershed assessment procedures and riparian management guidelines have tended to focus on stream sediment, which is understandable, given the major impacts that sediment can have in stream ecosystems. However, as climate changes and as the extent of harvesting in gentle terrain mountain pine beetle affected forests increases, other streamwater quality parameters, such as temperature or chemistry, can become important. If stream ecosystems are to remain functioning well, it is important to have management guidelines which consider all streamwater quality parameters. Optimum buffer strip widths, for example, vary depending on the stream parameter considered (e.g. Castelle et al. 1994).
In recent years there have been several reviews and syntheses of different aspects of forest management impacts on aquatic ecosystems, but these have been primarily for one forest management activity (e.g. timber harvesting) or one streamwater quality characteristic (e.g. sediment), and often for one size of watershed (e.g. small) as exemplified by the reviews appearing in the August, 2005, edition of the Journal of the American Water Resources Association. The proposed project would include a synthesis of these reviews and syntheses, and thus be relevant to a broader range of forest management activities, streamwater quality characteristics, and watershed sizes, than most existing literature.

Project objectives and target audience: The objective of the proposed project is firstly to produce a comprehensive review of forestry effects on streamwater physical and chemical quality for scientists working in this field, then secondly to produce guidelines for forest managers and practitioners in B.C. and elsewhere aimed at minimizing any adverse effects of different forest management activities (forest harvesting, forest fertilization, road construction, herbicide application, and prescribed burning) on streamwater physical and chemical quality.

    Deliverables:

Executive Summary (28Kb)
Technical Report (0.9Mb)

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Updated August 16, 2010 

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