|Sponsor:||Alberta-Pacific Forest Industries Inc.|
Object & Deliverables
The hydrological and ecological factors controlling the character and productivity of wetland complexes in the Western Boreal Forest of north central Alberta are poorly understood. This project increased the basic understanding of these processes to predict the impact of environmental changes on wetlands, and to set targets for protection and post-development restoration.
The project had three objectives: determine the abundance and distribution of wetlands that provide suitable habitat for water birds in the Western Boreal Forest in north central Alberta; determine the natural variation in dominant hydrological and ecological process controlling wetland structure and function by comparing these processes across a range of geologic settings and over several years; and derive and automate indices of these dominant processes for inclusion in a Geographic Information System (GIS)-based Decision Support System (DSS) that will be used to predict the productivity and response of individual ponds and wetland complexes to disturbances within the landscape.
Research was conducted at the HEAD research site located in the Western Boreal Forest north of Utikuma Lake, approximately 500 km north of Edmonton, Alberta.
Results are presented in a report, entitled “Hydrology, Ecology and Disturbance of Western Boreal Wetlands (HEAD)” prepared by Dr. K.J. Devito, Department of Biological Sciences at the University of Alberta; as well as refereed journal articles, conference presentations, technical reports, and non-refereed articles and reports.