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Management strategy and options for the Tweedsmuir-Entiako Caribou winter range

Author(s) or contact(s): D.B. Cichowski and A. Banner
Source: Research Branch
Subject: Wildlife
Series: Land Management Report
Other details:  Published 1993. Hardcopy is available.


Proposed logging on winter ranges of woodland caribou (Rangifer tarandus caribou) in west-central British Columbia, specifically the Tweedsmuir-Entiako area, precipitated the need for a timber harvesting strategy compatible with caribou winter habitat requirements. Information based on a study of caribou winter habitat selection and on an ecosystem map which emphasized the abundance of terrestrial lichens - the primary winter food source of the caribou - was used to develop a management strategy for the winter range. Both potential direct and indirect effects of timber harvesting on the caribou population were considered. The management strategy for the Tweedsmuir-Entiako caribou winter range comprises two levels of management: the landscape level (Caribou Management Zones); and the site-specific level (caribou habitat/timber values). Thirteen Caribou Management Zones were delineated, which identify areas of high (2), moderate (7), and low (4) value caribou habitat. Procedures for delineating Caribou Management Zones are described.

Caribou habitat and timber values were compared by using the PAMAP Geographic Information System (GIS) to overlay the caribou habitat map (caribou habitat values) and the B.C. Ministry of Forests forest cover map (timber values). The caribou habitat map was colour-themed according to caribou habitat value, and the caribou habitat/forest cover overlay map was colour-themed according to caribou habitat/ forest cover value classes.

Six management options are proposed as part of the winter range management strategy. The impacts of those options on the timber supply were assessed using databases generated by the caribou habitat/ forest cover overlay map. As well, the impacts of management options on the Tweedsmuir-Entiako caribou herd, and on the two Timber Supply Areas in the winter range, are discussed.

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Updated November 26, 2008