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Rock Lake


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Location

Yellowhead County AB
Canada

1974 goat season


Author(s): Hall, B.

Year: 1974

Citation:
Hall, B. (1974).  1974 goat season. Unpublished report AFW-74-119,

Breeding distribution and behaviour of the white pelican in the Athabasca oil sands area


Author(s): Beaver, R., & Ballantyne M.

Year: 1979

Abstract:
Aerial surveys and ground investigations were conducted in the spring and summer months from 1975 to 1977 on a breeding population of White Pelicans (Pelecanus erythrorhynchos) in the Birch Mountains area of northeastern Alberta. In 1975, an undetermined number of White Pelicans bred at Big Island Lake located approximately 20 km northeast of Namur Lake; however, the sighting of only 12 young during a July aerial survey at that location suggested a small breeding flock. Pelicans did not breed successfully at Namur Lake, a previously occupied nesting location, during the course of this study. In 1976 and 1977, White Pelicans established nesting colonies and bred at a rookery site at Birch Lake, located approximately 10 km south of Namur Lake. Aerial photographs taken at the Birch Lake rookery during the height of the nesting season in late May and early June revealed 140 breeding pairs in 1976 and 70 pairs in 1977. Sixty-eight young were raised to the flying stage in 1976, compared with 55 in 1977, resulting in fledging rates of 0.49 and 0.78 young per nesting attempt in those respective years. Calculated breeding success (number of young raised to the flying stage from estimated total eggs laid) was 22.1 percent in 1976 and 35.7 percent in 1977. In 1976, an estimated eight to 20 nests were lost to rising water levels induced by beaver (Castor canadensis) dams constructed on the outflow channel of Birch Lake. Periodic removal of these dams prevented loss of nests in 1977 to flooding. Mortality during the breeding season included an 11.7 percent loss of eggs and a 19.1 percent loss of young in 1977, the only year for which such data were obtained. White Pelicans bred only on island sites located in permanent water bodies. The birds nested on flat or gently sloping terrain which provided loose substrates for nest mound construction. These substrates varied in composition from loose organic soils to gravel with scattered rock. Density and composition of vegetative cover at nesting locations were also variable, being partly modified by the nesting activity of the birds themselves. Pelicans, which were presumably foraging, were observed on water bodies as far as 69 km from the breeding site. Both adults and young demonstrated varying levels of behavioural responses to disturbances occurring near the rookery. The documentation of these responses and other behaviour is presented in a discussion which considers their implications with respect to the potential effects of development of the Athabasca Oil Sands deposits and the anticipated accelerated recreational use of the Birch Mountains wilderness. Management and reclamation strategies are discussed.

Carbon-13 fractionation in carbon dioxide emitting diurnally from soils and vegetation at ten sites on the North American continent


Author(s): Lancaster, J.

Year: 1990

Abstract:
A series of field experiments explore the characteristic fractionation of the $\sp{13}$C isotope by land plants on the North American continent, as seen in CO$\sb2$ emitting from plants and soils to the canopy layer during a diurnal cycle. CO$\sb2$ concentrations are reported for 495 discrete air samples taken within forests and over tundra at ten, rural sites ranging from 9$\sp\circ$N to 69$\sp\circ$N (Barro Colorado, Panama; Chamela, Mexico; Cuyamaca, CA; Yosemite, CA; Scotia Ridge, PA; Barnard, VT; Hamilton, MT; Rock Lake, Alberta; Bethel, AL; and Toolik, AL). $\delta\sp{13}$C, $\delta\sp{18}$O and N$\sb2$O concentration are reported for 236 samples of CO$\sb2$ extracted cryogenically from the air samples. The results show the intercepts, $\delta\sp{13}$C$\sb{\rm I}$, of least-squares fits to the isotopic and reciprocal concentration at each site to range progressively from $-$28% near the equator to $-$23% near the Artic Circle. The latitudinal trend toward greater fractionation within the closed, tropical canopy is consistent with previous hypotheses regarding cyclic enrichment and water-use-efficiency relations, but is inconsistent with the hypothesis that $\sp{13}$C enrichment simply follows greater insolation. The mean value found for $\delta\sp{13}$C$\sb{\rm I}$, $-$25% ($\pm$1.6%), is in close agreement with nominal values used in global computer modelling of the biosphere-atmosphere CO$\sb2$ flux. Variability in samples from soil enclosure experiments and between years at some sites suggests that multiple factors may cause spatial and temporal heterogeneity in the $\sp{13}$C fractionation of as much as 2% to 3%. Anomalous N$\sb2$O or $\delta\sp{18}$O values identify 90% of the $\delta\sp{13}$C data departing significantly ($>$2 sigma) from the least-squares fit for each site. N$\sb2$O concentrations range from 267 ppb to 3,882 ppb, while N$\sb2$O corrections to $\delta\sp{13}$C range from +0.06% to +1.95%. 20% of all samples require N$\sb2$O-based correction to the $\delta\sp{13}$C data that depart from the nominal +0.23% correction by more than 1%, suggesting that applying a constant correction for N$\sb2$O, or no correction at all may expose such assessments of characteristic isotopic composition in biospheric-atmosphere CO$\sb2$ exchange to an additional uncertainty exceeding 1%.

Fall fisheries investigation in the Athabasca and Clearwater rivers upstream of Fort McMurray Vol I


Year: 1978

Abstract:
Fisheries investigations were undertaken in the Athabasca and Clearwater rivers upstream of Fort McMurray in the fall of 1977. The major emphasis of these studies was to delineate actual and potential spawning areas for lake whitefish in the Athabasca and Clearwater rivers. Lake whitefish were found to spawn during mid-October in the mainstem of the Athabasca River from Fort McMurray upstream to Cascade Rapids, a distance of approximately 32 km. The major concentrations of spawning lake whitefish were immediately below Mountain Rapids (24 km upstream of Fort McMurray). There was no evidence of lake whitefish spawning in the Clearwater River. Spawning generally occurred in fast water over broken rock, rubble, and coarse gravel substrates. While recaptures were insufficient to calculate a population estimate by scientific means, the spawning population is large, certainly numbering tens of thousands of fish. Post-spawning tag returns indicate that the lake whitefish spawners moved downstream immediately after spawning, returning to the Peace-Athabasca Delta. The Athabasca River upstream of Fort McMurray provides critical spawning habitat for lake whitefish. Other important fish species, including goldeye, longnose sucker, walleye, and northern pike, also occur in the project study area.

Fall fisheries investigations in the Athabasca and Clearwater Rivers upstream of Fort McMurray. Vol I. Results, discussions and conclusions


Year: 1978

Abstract:
Fisheries investigations were undertaken in the Athabasca and Clearwater rivers upstream of Fort McMurray in the fall of 1977. The major emphasis of these studies was to delineate actual and potential spawning areas for lake whitefish in the Athabasca and Clearwater rivers. Lake whitefish were found to spawn during mid-October in the mainstem of the Athabasca River from Fort McMurray upstream to Cascade Rapids, a distance of approximately 32 km. The major concentrations of spawning lake whitefish were immediately below Mountain Rapids (24 km upstream of Fort McMurray). There was no evidence of lake whitefish spawning in the Clearwater River. Spawning generally occurred in fast water over broken rock, rubble, and coarse gravel substrates. While recaptures were insufficient to calculate a population estimate by scientific means, the spawning population is large, certainly numbering tens of thousands of fish. Post-spawning tag returns indicate that the lake whitefish spawners moved downstream immediately after spawning, returning to the Peace-Athabasca Delta. The Athabasca River upstream of Fort McMurray provides critical spawning habitat for lake whitefish. Other important fish species, including goldeye, longnose sucker, walleye, and northern pike, also occur in the project study area.

Fall fisheries investigations in the Athabasca and Clearwater Rivers upstream of Fort McMurray: Volume I


Year: 1978

Abstract:
Fisheries investigations were undertaken in the Athabasca and Clearwater rivers upstream of Fort McMurray in the fall of 1977. The major emphasis of these studies was to delineate actual and potential spawning areas for lake whitefish in the Athabasca and Clearwater rivers. Lake whitefish were found to spawn during mid-October in the mainstem of the Athabasca River from Fort McMurray upstream to Cascade Rapids, a distance of approximately 32 km. The major concentrations of spawning lake whitefish were immediately below Mountain Rapids (24 km upstream of Fort McMurray). There was no evidence of lake whitefish spawning in the Clearwater River. Spawning generally occurred in fast water over broken rock, rubble, and coarse gravel substrates. While recaptures were insufficient to calculate a population estimate by scientific means, the spawning population is large, certainly numbering tens of thousands of fish. Post-spawning tag returns indicate that the lake whitefish spawners moved downstream immediately after spawning, returning to the Peace-Athabasca Delta. The Athabasca River upstream of Fort McMurray provides critical spawning habitat for lake whitefish. Other important fish species, including goldeye, longnose sucker, walleye, and northern pike, also occur in the project study area.

Potential impacts of beaver on oil sands reclamation success - an analysis of available literature


Year: 2013

Abstract:
The North American beaver (Castor canadensis) is a large semi-aquatic rodent that has played a central role in shaping the Canadian boreal landscape, and colonial Canadian history. Exploitation of North American beaver populations to supply the European hat industry spurred the westward expansion of European explorers and traders into the continental interior. With intensive unregulated harvest, beavers virtually disappeared across much of their range; though populations are recovering, the species is only about 10% as abundant as it was before the fur trade took its toll. As a result, much of the recent ecological history of the Canadian boreal forest has occurred in the absence of this keystone ecosystem engineer, and the ecological state that we perceive as natural is in many regions quite different than it was a century ago. Beavers, while playing an important role in structuring streams and wetlands by altering vegetation communities and water flow patterns, may also affect human structures. In the mineable oil sands region of northeastern Alberta, much of the landscape will be impacted by mining. Mine sites will have to be reclaimed, and those reclaimed sites will consist of engineered landforms (including water bodies and waterways); the long-term hydrological and ecological function of those sites may be vulnerable to beaver activity. In an effort to determine if approaches exist that could manage the risk of beavers colonizing and negatively impacting reclaimed sites, we performed an extensive literature search and analysis. Our objective was to examine characteristics of beaver ecology that might potentially impact reclamation plans, and to identify possible methods to mitigate those impacts. We also include information on traditional use, historical abundance, and current abundance in the mineable oil sands region to provide important historical and ecological context. Although beavers inhabit a range of aquatic habitats, the focus of our review is on watercourses that could be dammed by beavers. Of the aquatic habitats which will be constructed during reclamation, these systems are probably the most vulnerable to impacts from beaver activity. Note, however, that inlet and outflow streams from lakes may be vulnerable to beaver activity, which could impact the performance of constructed lakes in a variety of ways. Beavers alter stream form and function, create wetlands, and change vegetation patterns. The most important predictor of beaver occurrence is stream gradient, with low gradients being associated with higher beaver activity. Stream depth and width, soil drainage, and stream substrate are also important. Although beavers may also respond to vegetation factors, such as tree or shrub species and density, hydrological factors are more important predictors of beaver occupancy of a site. The primary forage preferred by beavers includes deciduous tree and shrub species. Aspen (Populous tremuloides) is the species most preferred by beaver, and is a common component of reclamation plantings and natural recolonization of reclamation sites in the oil sands region. Beavers are central-place foragers, meaning foraging is concentrated around a central home base. They typically harvest deciduous trees and shrubs up to 60 m or more from the water, but most harvest occurs less than 30 to 40 m from the water’s edge. Predation (and predation risk) restricts the size of beavers’ foraging areas, and may also regulate their population size. Management of wolf populations to limit predation on caribou in northeastern Alberta may have significant indirect effects on beaver abundance and distribution by releasing them from predation pressure. The boreal forest ecosystem of Canada evolved over millennia with the beaver as a keystone species altering hydrological systems, creating vast areas of wetlands and beaver meadows, changing vegetation communities and modifying geomorphological processes. Reclamation of functional ecosystems in the region must therefore integrate beavers and their engineered structures. The most ecologically- and cost-effective approach is to design reclaimed areas with the objective of including beaver, but directing beaver activity to areas away from vulnerable reclamation structures. Ecological function requires the presence of beaver on the post-reclamation landscape, and the species is important to First Nations peoples and other trappers in the area. Although beaver abundance can be expected to increase in the area after reclamation, their activities will result in the replacement of existing vegetation with species of lower nutritional quality to beaver (conifer trees). This is expected to result in a beaver population decline and then stabilization over time. With beavers an integral component of the functional landscape, it is important to create “beaver exclusion zones” to ensure that the impact of the species is diverted to areas where beaver activity does not damage reclamation structures. There are very few existing studies of beaver impacts to reclaimed areas. Incorporating ecologically-based strategies for keeping beaver density low in sensitive areas at the outset of a reclamation project, and then monitoring the effectiveness of that strategy, is the best advice that can be derived from our analysis of the existing literature. Beavers could be discouraged from settling at a site by creating streams with steep gradients (>10%) that are wide and deep enough to ensure substantial water flows, are armoured with rock or cobble bottoms, and are bordered by coniferous tree species and/or grass and sedge species. Trees should be planted at high density to prevent growth of shrubs and deciduous trees in the understory, as these are preferred by beaver. Deciduous vegetation should not be planted during reclamation near sites where beavers are to be excluded, and it may be necessary to remove existing deciduous trees and shrubs and replace them with conifers, grasses and sedges in these areas. Although planting specific types of vegetation may be used to discourage beavers from settling a certain area in the short term, natural succession could eventually result in other vegetation communities attractive to beavers. Therefore, unless long-term vegetation management is envisioned, reclamation plans should not rely on using vegetation to dissuade beaver activity in sensitive areas alone, though this approach may be used in combination with other methods, especially in the few decades immediately following reclamation. Note that the goal is to plan for a maintenance-free environment in which ongoing beaver control is unnecessary, and the use of multiple strategies in tandem to guide beaver activity is more likely to achieve this goal. More active, maintenance-intensive techniques could be used to limit the damage caused by beaver dams to sensitive areas. These techniques include lethal (e.g., kill trapping or shooting) and nonlethal (e.g., relocation) methods to reduce population density. However, these methods require constant effort, and can be expensive. Another approach is to manipulate water flow through existing beaver dams using pipe drainage systems; this allows the beaver dam to stay in place, while reducing the risk that it will trap enough water to be dangerous if the dam should fail. Again, however, these drainage systems require long-term maintenance. One approach may be more sustainable in the long term and require less maintenance: minimize or maximize water flow through engineered channels, as beavers are less likely to use very low-flow and very high-flow watercourses. Note that beavers may still affect these channels, especially when population densities are high or other habitat is unavailable; however, the probability of beavers affecting very low-flow or high-flow channels is lower than for watercourses with more moderate flows. Creating several dispersed low-flow channels may make an area less desirable to beavers compared to a single moderate flow channel. Similarly, multiple low- to moderate-flow channels could be created, with some having characteristics that attract beavers (“decoys”) and others that do not (“exclusions”), allowing water flow to continue through some channels even in the presence of beavers. “Pre-dam” fences can be installed on decoy streams to create a structure to encourage beavers to occupy a site where damage is not a concern. Discharge could be controlled by regulating water flow through exclusion streams that are not dammed, or by installing flow devices though dams on decoy streams. A similar approach might be used on culverts that allow streams to flow beneath roadways; flow devices could be used proactively at these sites, and/or oversized culverts could be installed to allow maintenance of the natural width of the stream channel and reduce the noise of running water, which attracts beaver activity. Although many different landforms on the reclaimed landscape may be vulnerable to beaver activity, a few are considered critical areas where beaver impacts must be controlled, including the outlets of lakes, side-hill drainage systems, and constructed peatlands. Beaver activity at the outlet of constructed lakes could cause instability in containment structures, negatively affect littoral and riparian zones around the lake, and increase the probability of catastrophic outburst flooding. Damming of side-hill drainage systems could cause stream avulsion and routing of water flow into a new pathway not engineered for a stream, causing increased erosion. Flooding of constructed peatlands could convert them to open-water systems, thereby subverting their intended ecological function. These critical areas should be protected from beaver activities, while other areas should be designed to accommodate this important species. In practice, several different approaches – tailored to specific situations and landforms – will be necessary to develop and implement plans that accommodate beavers as a part of the post-reclamation landscape. As so few data exist to inform effective reclamation in the presence of beavers, all of the methods we suggest carry an unknown degree of risk. This risk can be decreased in the future by adapting methods based on observed effectiveness. We recommend implementing a research and adaptive management program on the influence of beavers on reclamation within the context of oil sands reclamation in northeast Alberta. Lack of existing information, particularly in northeast Alberta, illustrates the need to implement research that documents the positive and negative influence of beavers on reclamation sites and tests alternative methods to prevent negative and support positive influences. Otherwise reclamation strategies will be ad-hoc and tenuous, with a mixed success rate. A research and monitoring program would ideally contribute to a standardized strategic approach to mitigating negative beaver influences on reclamation of watercourses in the oil sands region. Beavers are, to a certain extent, unpredictable. No single approach will guarantee that a site will be unaffected by beaver activity. We suggest that multiple management approaches be simultaneously implemented at sites that are particularly vulnerable or critical for the functioning of the reclaimed landscape (e.g., outlet streams from constructed lakes). It is impossible to predict all eventualities, as the character of the reclaimed landscape will change over time due to successional processes, fire, global climate change, and resource extraction. The information we provide is the best available based on limited current knowledge, and provides the best chance for minimizing risk while accommodating this keystone species. Ultimately, the presence of beavers on reclaimed oil sands leases will increase biodiversity, enhance ecosystem goods and services, and assist in developing ecosystems that are consistent with natural systems in the boreal region.

Potential impacts of beaver on oil sands reclamation success–an analysis of available literature


Year: 2013

Abstract:
The North American beaver (Castor canadensis) is a large semi-aquatic rodent that has played acentral role in shaping the Canadian boreal landscape, and colonial Canadian history. Exploitation of North American beaver populations to supply the European hat industry spurred the westward expansion of European explorers and traders into the continental interior. With intensive unregulated harvest, beavers virtually disappeared across much of their range; though populations are recovering, the species is only about 10% as abundant as it was before the furtrade took its toll. As a result, much of the recent ecological history of the Canadian boreal forest has occurred in the absence of this keystone ecosystem engineer, and the ecological state that we perceive as natural is in many regions quite different than it was a century ago. Beavers, while playing an important role in structuring streams and wetlands by altering vegetation communities and water flow patterns, may also affect human structures. In the mineable oil sands region of northeastern Alberta, much of the landscape will be impacted by mining. Mine sites will have to be reclaimed, and those reclaimed sites will consist of engineered landforms (including water bodies and waterways); the long-term hydrological and ecological function of those sites may be vulnerable to beaver activity. In an effort to determine if approaches exist that could manage the risk of beavers colonizing and negatively impactingreclaimed sites, we performed an extensive literature search and analysis. Our objective was to examine characteristics of beaver ecology that might potentially impact reclamation plans, and to identify possible methods to mitigate those impacts. We also include information on traditional use, historical abundance, and current abundance in the mineable oil sands region to provide important historical and ecological context. Although beavers inhabit a range of aquatic habitats,the focus of our review is on watercourses that could be dammed by beavers. Of the aquatic habitats which will be constructed during reclamation, these systems are probably the most vulnerable to impacts from beaver activity. Note, however, that inlet and outflow streams fromlakes may be vulnerable to beaver activity, which could impact the performance of constructed lakes in a variety of ways. Beavers alter stream form and function, create wetlands, and change vegetation patterns. The most important predictor of beaver occurrence is stream gradient, with low gradients being associated with higher beaver activity. Stream depth and width, soil drainage, and stream substrate are also important. Although beavers may also respond to vegetation factors, such astree or shrub species and density, hydrological factors are more important predictors of beaver occupancy of a site.The primary forage preferred by beavers includes deciduous tree and shrub species. Aspen(Populous tremuloides) is the species most preferred by beaver, and is a common component of reclamation plantings and natural recolonization of reclamation sites in the oil sands region. Beavers are central-place foragers, meaning foraging is concentrated around a central home base. They typically harvest deciduous trees and shrubs up to 60 m or more from the water, but mostharvest occurs less than 30 to 40 m from the water’s edge. Predation (and predation risk) restricts the size of beavers’ foraging areas, and may also regulate their population size. Management of wolf populations to limit predation on caribou in northeastern Alberta may have significant indirect effects on beaver abundance and distribution by releasing them frompredation pressure.The boreal forest ecosystem of Canada evolved over millennia with the beaver as a keystone species altering hydrological systems, creating vast areas of wetlands and beaver meadows,changing vegetation communities and modifying geomorphological processes. Reclamation offunctional ecosystems in the region must therefore integrate beavers and their engineered structures. The most ecologically- and cost-effective approach is to design reclaimed areas withthe objective of including beaver, but directing beaver activity to areas away from vulnerablereclamation structures. Ecological function requires the presence of beaver on the post-reclamation landscape, and the species is important to First Nations peoples and other trappers in the area. Although beaver abundance can be expected to increase in the area after reclamation, their activities will result in the replacement of existing vegetation with species of lower nutritional quality to beaver (conifer trees). This is expected to result in a beaver population decline and then stabilization over time. With beavers an integral component of the functional landscape, it is important to create “beaver exclusion zones” to ensure that the impact of thespecies is diverted to areas where beaver activity does not damage reclamation structures.There are very few existing studies of beaver impacts to reclaimed areas. Incorporating ecologically-based strategies for keeping beaver density low in sensitive areas at the outset of a reclamation project, and then monitoring the effectiveness of that strategy, is the best advice thatcan be derived from our analysis of the existing literature. Beavers could be discouraged from settling at a site by creating streams with steep gradients (>10%) that are wide and deep enoughto ensure substantial water flows, are armoured with rock or cobble bottoms, and are bordered byconiferous tree species and/or grass and sedge species. Trees should be planted at high density to prevent growth of shrubs and deciduous trees in the understory, as these are preferred by beaver. Deciduous vegetation should not be planted during reclamation near sites where beavers are to be excluded, and it may be necessary to remove existing deciduous trees and shrubs and replace them with conifers, grasses and sedges in these areas. Although planting specific typesof vegetation may be used to discourage beavers from settling a certain area in the short term,natural succession could eventually result in other vegetation communities attractive to beavers. Therefore, unless long-term vegetation management is envisioned, reclamation plans should notrely on using vegetation to dissuade beaver activity in sensitive areas alone, though this approachmay be used in combination with other methods, especially in the few decades immediately following reclamation. Note that the goal is to plan for a maintenance-free environment in whichongoing beaver control is unnecessary, and the use of multiple strategies in tandem to guidebeaver activity is more likely to achieve this goal. More active, maintenance-intensive techniques could be used to limit the damage caused bybeaver dams to sensitive areas. These techniques include lethal (e.g., kill trapping or shooting)and nonlethal (e.g., relocation) methods to reduce population density. However, these methodsrequire constant effort, and can be expensive. Another approach is to manipulate water flowthrough existing beaver dams using pipe drainage systems; this allows the beaver dam to stay in place, while reducing the risk that it will trap enough water to be dangerous if the dam shouldfail. Again, however, these drainage systems require long-term maintenance.One approach may be more sustainable in the long term and require less maintenance: minimize or maximize water flow through engineered channels, as beavers are less likely to use very low-flow and very high-flow watercourses. Note that beavers may still affect these channels,especially when population densities are high or other habitat is unavailable; however, the probability of beavers affecting very low-flow or high-flow channels is lower than forwatercourses with more moderate flows. Creating several dispersed low-flow channels maymake an area less desirable to beavers compared to a single moderate flow channel. Similarly, multiple low- to moderate-flow channels could be created, with some having characteristics thatattract beavers (“decoys”) and others that do not (“exclusions”), allowing water flow to continuethrough some channels even in the presence of beavers. “Pre-dam” fences can be installed ondecoy streams to create a structure to encourage beavers to occupy a site where damage is not aconcern. Discharge could be controlled by regulating water flow through exclusion streams that are not dammed, or by installing flow devices though dams on decoy streams. A similar approach might be used on culverts that allow streams to flow beneath roadways; flow devices could be used proactively at these sites, and/or oversized culverts could be installed to allowmaintenance of the natural width of the stream channel and reduce the noise of running water,which attracts beaver activity.Although many different landforms on the reclaimed landscape may be vulnerable to beaver activity, a few are considered critical areas where beaver impacts must be controlled, includingthe outlets of lakes, side-hill drainage systems, and constructed peatlands. Beaver activity at the outlet of constructed lakes could cause instability in containment structures, negatively affectlittoral and riparian zones around the lake, and increase the probability of catastrophic outburstflooding. Damming of side-hill drainage systems could cause stream avulsion and routing ofwater flow into a new pathway not engineered for a stream, causing increased erosion. Floodingof constructed peatlands could convert them to open-water systems, thereby subverting theirintended ecological function. These critical areas should be protected from beaver activities,while other areas should be designed to accommodate this important species.In practice, several different approaches – tailored to specific situations and landforms – will benecessary to develop and implement plans that accommodate beavers as a part of the post-reclamation landscape. As so few data exist to inform effective reclamation in the presence ofbeavers, all of the methods we suggest carry an unknown degree of risk. This risk can bedecreased in the future by adapting methods based on observed effectiveness. We recommend implementing a research and adaptive management program on the influence of beavers onreclamation within the context of oil sands reclamation in northeast Alberta. Lack of existing information, particularly in northeast Alberta, illustrates the need to implement research thatdocuments the positive and negative influence of beavers on reclamation sites and testsalternative methods to prevent negative and support positive influences. Otherwise reclamationstrategies will be ad-hoc and tenuous, with a mixed success rate. A research and monitoring program would ideally contribute to a standardized strategic approach to mitigating negativebeaver influences on reclamation of watercourses in the oil sands region. Beavers are, to a certain extent, unpredictable. No single approach will guarantee that a site willbe unaffected by beaver activity. We suggest that multiple management approaches besimultaneously implemented at sites that are particularly vulnerable or critical for the functioning of the reclaimed landscape (e.g., outlet streams from constructed lakes). It is impossible topredict all eventualities, as the character of the reclaimed landscape will change over time due tosuccessional processes, fire, global climate change, and resource extraction. The information weprovide is the best available based on limited current knowledge, and provides the best chancefor minimizing risk while accommodating this keystone species. Ultimately, the presence of beavers on reclaimed oil sands leases will increase biodiversity, enhance ecosystem goods andservices, and assist in developing ecosystems that are consistent with natural systems in the boreal region.

Rock Lake - Solomon Creek Wildland Park


Year: 2001

Abstract:
Rock Lake-Solomon Creek Wildland Park is located northwest of Hinton and extends from the Athabasca River in the south to Rock Lake Provincial Recreation Area (PRA) and Willmore Wilderness to the northwest. You can reach the south end of the park along Solomon Creek by taking the road to the hamlet of Brule. The access to Rock Lake PRA is 70 kilometres north of Hinton. A 32 km graveled road leaves Highway 40 and winds along a route used by the petroleum and forest industries. Use caution when traveling this road and be aware that the road is not regularly maintained.

Stratigraphy of the Athabasca group and alteration surrounding the Maybelle River uranium trend in Alberta


Author(s): Kupsch, B. G.

Year: 2003

Abstract:
A detailed study of 16 drill cores surrounding the uranium zone in the Maybelle River area, in the southwestern part of the Proterozoic Athabasca Basin in Alberta, was undertaken to better define Athabasca Group sedimentology, stratigraphy and the alteration surrounding the deposit. The Athabasca Group sandstones constitute three third-order sequences: the Fair Point sequence (composed of the upper Fair Point Formation), the Manitou Falls sequence (composed of Manitou Falls c and d members) and the base of the Lazenby Lake-Wolverine Point sequence (composed of the Lazenby Lake Formation). The unconformity-type uranium-polymetallic mineral prospect is located at the base of the Fair Point Formation just above the unconformity and intersecting a graphitic mylonitic fault zone. Alteration features surrounding the uranium zone are similar in characteristic to those associated with deposits in Saskatchewan that have similar host rock alteration and metallogenic signatures. Petrochemical studies on drill core document a polymetallic assemblage of uranium, arsenic, nickel, boron, phosphorus, molybdenum and cobalt, in decreasing order of abundance.

Survey of the Peregrine Falcon (Falco peregrinus anatum) in Alberta


Author(s): Corrigan, R.

Year: 2000

Abstract:
There are three sub-species of peregrine falcons found in Canada; only the anatum sub-species breeds in Alberta. Prior to the 1970s, peregrine falcons could be found throughout Alberta. They nested on cliffs along the major river systems of southern Alberta and, in northern Alberta, nested along the north shore of Lake Athabasca, the riverbanks of northeastern Alberta and on rock outcrops throughout the Canadian shield. This species was extirpated in southern Alberta in the early 1970s, mainly because of reproductive failure caused by organochlorine presticides.