Forest Investment Account (FIA) - Land Base Investment Program
FIA Project 8168001

    Group selection in low elevation mountain caribou habitat in the Quesnel Highland Isaiah Creek project
Project lead: Susan K. Stevenson
Subject: Forest Investment Account (FIA), British Columbia
Series: Forest Investment Account (FIA) - Land Base Investment Program
Increasing interest in an ecosystem management approach to forestry has challenged foresters to develop ways to manage wet cedar-hemlock stands to provide present and future economic benefits, and at the same time to maintain the integrity of the ecosystem. Group selection harvesting has the potential to maintain some of the ecological attributes of old stands, while realizing benefits from timber harvesting. In the Interior Wetbelt of British Columbia, part of the impetus to apply selection harvesting techniques has been the imperative to maintain habitat for mountain caribou. Although group selection with low volume removal and long cutting cycles has been tried in several subzones of the Engelmann Spruce-Subalpine Fir zone and the Interior Cedar-Hemlock (ICH) zone, the approach is new to the ICHwk2 variant.
To begin addressing the needs for operational experience with low-volume group selection and for information on response of key environmental variables, the Research Section in the Southern Interior Forest Region, West Fraser Mills Ltd., the University of Northern British Columbia, and FPInnovations-Feric Division collaborated to establish a pilot trial of group selection at Isaiah Creek, in the Quesnel Highland.
The core objectives of the Isaiah Creek project were to document pre-harvest and immediate post-harvest stand structure, wildlife tree occurrence, and coarse woody debris; to measure the response of arboreal lichens to partial cutting; to monitor regeneration development in the openings; to monitor vegetation response to partial cutting; and to monitor treefall related to harvesting. This work was funded by West Fraser Mills Ltd. (Forest Investment Account funds) and carried out in consultation with Southern Interior Forest Region researchers by a research team based at the University of Northern British Columbia. A second set of objectives was to measure harvesting productivity and damage to the residual stand. This work was done by FPInnovations - Feric Division.
The Isaiah Creek pilot trial and the research undertaken at the site were described in detail in the Establishment Report (Stevenson et al. 2010). The purpose of this report is to describe the work carried out in 2010/2011, to provide results of the studies that have not previously been summarized (arboreal lichen responses and windthrow), and to describe the current status of the project.
Contact: Susan K. Stevenson, 9250) 564-5695,

Updated May 19, 2011 

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