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Third Quarter Edition

October-December 2006

  What’s Been Happening?
8. RMF pilot project
9. Growth and Yield Science Unit workshop
10. Boreal Conference 2006
11. Canada World Youth
12. Field Work at the Gurd Research Site
13. Park GIS mapping project
14. Parkside Gully project update
15. FRP Strategy Update
16. Hydrology Workshop
17. CIF International Night
18. Growth and Yield Update

What do you think of our electronic newsletter?

General Manager’s Message

As I better understand the Forestry Research Partnership strategic direction and supporting work plan, I continue to be impressed with the “get things done” atmosphere that surrounds the Partnership. The Canadian Forest Sector is in one of the most difficult periods in it’s history, and everyone connected with the FRP is doing their best to turn their objectives into results.

We are experiencing a period in which barriers to the application of productivity improvement initiatives in our forest operations are being addressed at a more rapid rate. Industry has a need to reduce operating costs, and governments at all levels are working towards building a more competitive business climate for the forest sector. As the FRP strives to demonstrate results of enhanced productivity in the forest, alignment on eliminating obstacles to full implementation of innovative forest practices is equally important to a healthy forest sector.

Another opportunity that is emerging from these challenging times is the need to completely understand the value of programs such as the Forestry Research Partnership. As the level of profitability has eroded in the forest industry, the hurdle rates for the application of capital have risen sharply. Although all partners have renewed their commitment to the FRP, we must continue to measure results. It is important that we continue to identify the key drivers of forest productivity and measure or predict the impact of applying the best science in these areas. A clear understanding of where we started, where we are now are now, and a target of where we can be, needs to be quantified and communicated.

I look forward to working with the team to build on the success of the Forestry Research Partnership and clearly define and demonstrate value.

Bill Snell

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Welcome to Ken Durst and Samantha Turcotte!

This fall we welcomed two new members of the FRP extension team Ken Durst, Extension Manager for the FRP and Samantha Turcotte, Network Administrator/Website Specialist.
Click here to view a detailed article.

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Farewell to John Pineau

This September saw John Pineau's last month as the Extension Manager of the Forestry Research Partnership.
Click here for a farewell article for John.

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Farewell from John Pineau

Click here for a pdf version of the letter.

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2006 Teachers’ Tours

The 2006 Teachers’ Tours, run by the Forestry Research Partnership at the Canadian Ecology Centre in August were a resounding success! With approximately 70 teachers (English and French) from all over eastern Canada, this summer’s tours had far-reaching results in forestry education. Despite the long, action-packed days, everyone managed to stay positive, safe, and injury free! Please click on the link to read a more detailed article about this year’s installation of the tours.

Teacher's Tour 2006 Article

Many thanks to our coordinator, Martine Noël, for doing a great job of organizing this event and keeping things consistently running smoothly! We would also like to express the utmost gratitude to all of our generous sponsors, tour guides, caterers, bus drivers, and other helpers without whom these tours could not take place. The DVD’s with videos, pictures, and supplementary information are almost ready to be sent out, so participants and sponsors should keep an eye out for them!!

Things are a-changin’ for the 2007 Teachers’ Tours which will now be run by the Canadian Ecology Centre! Entitled the ‘Canadian Lumbermen’s Association Forestry Tour’, the event will be more inclusive with the participation of teachers as well as environmental educators such as Guide and Scout leaders. The new tours will essentially be the same as the old, but will include more opportunities to learn how to apply the newfound forestry knowledge in the classroom or other educational settings. The English tour is set to take place from August 7th – 10th, and the French from August 14th – 17th. Keep an eye on www.canadianecology.ca for more information in the coming months!

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Post-Secondary Field Schools at CEC

During this fall season the FRP and CEC staff were kept busy with the various college and university field camps coming through to learn about forestry, geomatics, and environmental protection.

Click here for a detailed article

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College co-op GIS work
By John Wright

The Forestry Research Partnership is proud to announce that this year it will be providing Co-operative Education projects for students at Sir Sandford Fleming College Geomatics Institute in Lindsay. Students enrolled in both the GIS Applications Specialist and GIS Cartographic Specialist Graduate Certificate programs will have the opportunity to work on a number of real world data management / GIS projects.

The projects will take anywhere from six to eight months to complete, and will involve such skills as data preprocessing, programming, database design and processing, spatial and statistical analysis, as well as final presentations of their end results.

The projects themselves will most likely involve the loading of historical forest inventory data into a digital format that will include but not be limited to: migrating hard copy maps into digital format, imagery geo-referencing, vector data-loading, quantitative analysis on site/stand specific areas, quantitative analysis on the entire landscape, and the digital identification of features of historical importance. Other possible projects include the creation of road and crossing GIS layers and linking them to water crossing inventory data to build road inventory networks.

The projects will be completed under the supervision of College professors and Forestry Research Partnership project supervisors. This is an exciting and challenging time in the educational career of the co-op students, and of significant benefit to those receiving the end product. The FRP is enthused at the opportunity to play a positive role in the educational process of the co-op students, and to have the privilege of being afforded an opportunity to have tomorrow’s GIS professionals completing projects for them today.

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RMF pilot project

Click here for a detailed article.

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Growth and Yield Science Unit workshop

Together with the Forest Ecosystem Science Co-operative from Thunder Bay, the Forestry Research Partnership hosted a Growth and Yield Science Unit workshop at the Canadian Ecology Centre on September 25th and 26th. The purpose of this event was to provide a forum for forestry scientists, workers, and professionals to meet, share ideas, and ultimately to learn about the FRP and FESC projects that are geared towards the improvement of provincial Growth and Yield programs.
Click on the link below for a detailed article.

Growth and Yield Sicence Unit Workshop at the CEC

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Boreal Conference 2006

An unprecedented crowd of over 300 forestry delegates attended the Boreal Conference hosted by the Lake Abitibi Model Forest (LAMF) and the Canadian Institute of Forestry (CIF) in Cochrane, Ontario from October 1st to 4th. This prestigious event took place at the brand new Tim Horton Event Centre and was co-chaired by the FRP’s own John Pineau and Guy Smith (CFS). Attendees representing forestry companies, conservation organizations, government, academia (including many students), consultants, etc. hailed from all across Canada, parts of the U.S., and as far as Europe! The purpose of this conference was to explore the Canadian boreal forest, climate change, and the relationships between people and the forest. Click on the link below for a detailed aritcle.

Boreal Conference 2006

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Canada World Youth

For the second year the Canadian Ecology Centre and the Forestry Research Partnership have had the opportunity to host six Canada World Youth participants during the autumn.
Canada World Youth is an organization that “designs and delivers international educational programs for youth (aged 17-29) with a focus on volunteer work and community development in a cross-cultural setting” (www.cwy-jcm.org). The participants lived with host families in North Bay and volunteered their time at the CEC/FRP, gaining varied experience ranging from school programming, to painting cabins, to using multimedia tools, to helping researchers during their busy fall season of field data collection.

Canada World Youth

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Field Work at the Gurd Research Site

During the autumn of 2006, some field work has been taking place at the Gurd Research and Tree Improvement Area near Trout Creek, Ontario. This 200 ha research site was established in 1963 by the Department of Lands and Forests for the purpose of establishing a number of seed orchards for different tree species. Since that time many more research projects have been established on the landbase, the management of which has been passed between a number of different organizations. Since 2000 the Forestry Research Partnership has been the primary manager of the site, establishing new studies, maintaining new and old projects, and developing interpretive information.
See the link below for photos and a detailed aritcle.

Fieldwork at the Gurd Research site

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Park GIS mapping project

A part of the Enhanced Inventory LiDAR project (see http://www.enhancedinventory.ca) is to use the high resolution digital imagery captured while flying over the park to produce a number of high quality thematic mapping products of Samuel de Champlain Provincial Park. Included on the maps will be all infrastructure, roads, trails, campgrounds, electrical hookups, and water sources. These features were all captured using high-end, sub-meter accuracy GPS units.

The accuracy of the imagery (pixel resolution of 33cm), in tandem with the accuracy of the GPS units will result in maps that will provide an extremely true representation of the park features. The high resolution digital imagery will be overlain with the GPS captured features to enable park users to have access to unprecedented accurately captured data of all park features.

In addition to the mapping projects, the GPS captured information (such as trail routes) will be made available to park users for download to their own personal GPS units. This will mean that trail users with downloaded data on their GPS units will be able to know exactly where they are on the trails, and exactly where they are going.

Completion of these mapping projects is expected to occur some time at the beginning of the New Year, with the trail data for GPS hikers presently available*. Slated for spring 2007 will be a thematic map of the most scenic canoe routes and portages that weave their ways through the park.
Click here for a LiDar Image

*Note: The Etienne trail system is still closed as a result of the storm that passed through the area in July.

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Parkside Gully project update

The Parkside Gully single-tree selection and product recovery study is a long term tolerant hardwood silviculture and management study that was established in 1967 at the Swan Lake Forest Research Reserve in Algonquin Provincial Park.

Click here for detailed article

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FRP Strategy Update
Nancy Young

The Forestry Research Partnership and the various committees that are associated with its management have been very busy during this autumn season. As this is the 5th year of the FRP’s existence, the time has come to write the Strategic Plan for the next five years. The focus of the first five was essentially to choose the research projects that were most pertinent to the forestry issues in north eastern Ontario (primarily focusing on enhancing inventory and increasing wood supply on a shrinking landbase), and to actively engage all of the partners in extension activities.

Now that all of these elements are in place it is time to put the results of the research into action in the field; this means working with management planning teams to synchronize the input of our projects and products with the Forestry Management Planning schedule. One of the main vehicles for this type of extension is through the two FRP Core Teams: the North East Team in Timmins, and the Nipissing Team in North Bay. On November 29th there will be a meeting with the team in Timmins to discuss the integration of a number of the FRP’s research projects into the Romeo Malette FMP which is currently underway. In addition it is recognized that direct extension to planners and practitioners is also of great importance.

The Science Advisory Committee held a meeting in September to discuss the changing scientific priorities of the FRP which will be worked into the Strategic Plan currently under review. The main message at this meeting was the fact that it is crucial for the FRP to stay focused on effectively transferring the knowledge gained through research up to this point, to the managers and practitioners that will be putting the science into practice. This was the original impetus to create the FRP and it is now time to show its efficacy.

Keep an eye on the website for the Strategic Plan in a few months.

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Hydrology Workshop
By Paul Courville

On Tuesday November 28th and Wednesday November 29th the Forestry Research Partnership hosted another successful workshop at the Canadian Ecology Centre. This event entitled Hydrologic Mapping Workshop using LiDAR attracted the interest of 30 participants from the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources (OMNR), Forest Engineering Research Institute of Canada (FERIC), data interpretation consultants, and municipal organizations.

The purpose of the workshop was to provide extension of the studies undertaken in the Using LiDAR (Light Detection and Ranging) Data for Hydrologic Mapping & Digital Elevation Modeling project sponsored by the Ontario Centres of Excellence. The workshop featured the work of Dr. Tarmo Remmel (York University) and Kent Todd (OMNR) in an instructor-led learning of the hydrology prediction freeware Terrain Analysis System (TAS) and Terrain Analysis Using Digital Elevation Models (TAUDEM). As well, the preliminary results of several predictive hydrology modeling studies were presented.,br

Of particular interest was a study by Emmanuel Tran of FERIC. Mr. Tran’s study involved the field verification of the streams predicted by TAS and TAUDEM. The preliminary findings of the study showed that there was a very high correlation between the streams observed in the field and the predictive hydrology produced by either program. The investigation included three stream orders: permanent, ephemeral, and intermittent. Ontario Base Maps (OBM), the standard used in forestry, usually only show permanent streams – and even these are not always accurate.

Then, Mark Partington of FERIC presented some of the preliminary results of his part of the project. Mr. Partington’s project involved soil disturbance by skidders, skid trail ruts, and the prediction of deep ruts with the freeware that Dr. Remmel and Mr. Todd tested in their portion of the project.

Lastly, Adam Hogg of the OMNR showed another interesting facet of the project with his investigation of delineating wetlands using the LiDAR data; this research was done with James Holland of Ducks Unlimited Canada. Hogg and Holland’s results show the use of the LiDAR DEM for predicting wetland boundaries is far superior to the OBM DEM and even aerial photo interpretation.

The participants indicated that workshop was a very successful learning experience and were very pleased with the format. The workshop materials will be posted by early January on the Forestry Research Partnership website www.forestresearch.ca in the Products Catalogue. If you have any questions regarding the workshop feel free to contact Paul Courville at paul@canadianecology.ca

Click here for a Lidar image.

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CIF International Night at the Canadian Ecology Centre
By Nancy Young

During the fifty-first International Night hosted by the Algonquin section of the Canadian Institute of Forestry (CIF) on November 30th, 2006, thirty members and interested locals had the opportunity to learn about Cameroon, Africa, and its forestry sector.

Click here for a detailed article

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Growth and Yield Update 2006/07
By Al Stinson

The field season for the data collection portion of the FRP’s growth and yield effort has drawn to a close making this a good time to provide an update on the FRP projects that are active this year in the area of growth and yield.

The FRP’s permanent growth plot program is implemented through the Forest Ecosystem Science Co-op, with the FRP contributing 75 plot remeasurements or establishments in forest types that are poorly represented in the existing database. The stratification of existing plots is reviewed annually to help set priorities for plot establishments and remeasurements based on the needs of researchers using this data for input into products such as empirical based yield curves. The data collected by the FRP is then pooled with the other FESC members and may be used to update yield curves where necessary. The combined effort of the FESC and FRP resulted in the remeasurement or establishment of 577 plots in this past field season.

Another active FRP growth and yield project this year is the yield curve refinement project which is focused on the validation of existing empirical yield curves as well as refining these curves based on new data from the PSP program.

A new project for the FRP this year is support of a taper function project lead by Dr. Mahadev Sharma from OFRI. This project will provide specific taper functions for the major forest species in Ontario. Most of the current taper function models are not species-specific and are based on data from other jurisdictions. Outputs from this project will then be incorporated into the empirical yield curve products in the future.

The FRP continues to support another project which is under the umbrella of the FESC and being lead by Dr. Jian Wang from Lakehead University. This project is aimed at developing growth intercept equations for Sb and Pj. The project will enable foresters to assign early site index attributes to regenerated stands of these species which will be a great improvement over the current methods of assigning site productivity.

There is also work ongoing to refine models that utilize the growth and yield data and modeling functions. Models such as FVS, MOSSY and the SDMD are continually undergoing refinements as we develop a better understanding of growth and yield through analysis of the PGP data set. The growth and yield effort of the FRP has produced some revolutionary products in the past such as the empirical benchmark yield curves but refinement of these products and continual development of additional products will be an ongoing effort.

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What do you think of our electronic newsletter?

This edition represents our Partnership’s fifth electronic news-bulletin. Please take a few minutes to give us some feedback by sending an email to forest@canadianecology.ca .

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