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Marten as Indicators of IFM Effects - 140-501

Description: In 2003-04, a short 6-month assessment of marten in IFM, non-IFM, and old forest stands was done near Kapuskasing.  Although the focus of these comparisons had not included horse logged stands, we collected some data on marten use in these horse-logged areas after we discovered that marten were frequently using them. Results of that assessment suggested that areas of the Gordon Cosens Forest that had been horse-logged may provide high-quality habitats only 50 years after harvesting.  If that is indeed the case, then through further study we can learn what makes these areas suitable habitat as such a relatively young age. By comparing marten population and habitat use in the horse-logged forests to habitat features in the current 40-year IFM (machine-logged) stands and to old growth forests, we can evaluate if and why these stands are suitable.  These horse-logged forests may also be highly representative of what careful logging (HARP/CLAG) under a multi-cohort system can achieve. Both HARP/CLAG are being used more extensively in recent years, and it is expected that this type of harvesting will be used more in the future. Thus, if these silviculture techniques also produce suitable habitat, then there are additional implications for wood supply (and local economies) that can be predicted using forest management models.

The specific objectives of the present study are:
 -          To understand marten use of horse-logged, IFM and non-IFM stands and landscapes in the claybelt area of northeastern Ontario;
-          To determine the value of marten as an indicator species for IFM sites;
-          To modify the Ontario marten habitat guidelines accordingly based on the new information, as it pertains to intensively managed landscapes;
-          To evaluate wood supply and silviculture costs with a spatial forest planning model for establishing and/or maintaining suitable habitat for marten.

This project will permit the application of new knowledge about marten gained from the Ontario marten study (Fryxell/Baker/Thompson), now in its’ final 2 years near Kapuskasing, and build on the small dataset for marten collected last winter under the LLT project on IFM effects.  The larger marten study does not explicitly address stand origins and structures and would be unable to directly comment on IFM, post-harvest silviculture or stand and forest-level harvest modifications, as we are proposing to do under this value-added project.

 

The Project Team: Ian Thompson, CFS, John Fryxell, University of Guelph, Jim Baker, OMNR, Tom Moore, Spatial Planning Systems

 

Papers:

Thompson, I.D. et al. 2008. Effects of post-harvest silviculture on use of boreal forest stands by amphibians and marten in Ontario. For. Chron. 84: 741-747.

 

Presentations:

Marten Population Ecology - Boreal Seminar 2008

 

Status Reports:

Status Report (2007-2008)

Project Work Report (2007-2008)

Tree Tip

 

For Additional Information Contact:

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