Peatland vegetation response post-fire in a changing climate
MetadataShow full item record
Peatland communities in western Canada have slowly developed over thousands of years with wildfires being a constant influence on these systems. As fires move through mature peatland communities, the aftermath is an open landscape where pioneer peatland species establish and develop. The open landscape supports the growth of successional species to create a mature forest, which is then ready for the fire interval cycle to continue. Fire cycles have been a constant on the landscape with little disruption; however, as climate change in western Canada has altered precipitation and temperature regimes, typical vegetation succession patterns that establish after peatland fires may be changing. The Chisholm fire of 2001 burned over 116,000 hectares of forest in northern Alberta, with most of the area being peatlands (treed fens). Vegetation surveys were completed throughout 2018 and 2019 within the burned peatlands of the Chisholm area and compared to an unburnt control area to identify species richness, diversity, composition and vegetation trends. I found, within the re-establishing peatland, a healthy, thriving and diverse community that is developing towards a community similar to the offsite mature treed fen. After almost 20 years of recovery, the affected vegetation community is dominated by peatland species. With temperatures and precipitation levels continually changing, the area is at a transition state in which the community may be maintained on the landscape or the area may experience a regime shift to a drier state.
Showing items related by title, author, creator and subject.
Monitoring permafrost degradation rates due to climate change : developing a practical GIS-based method Adams, Austin Allen (2017-03-17)Peatlands in the Alberta boreal forest are predicted to experience early and severe climate change impacts through permafrost degradation (melting). Permafrost loss and the subsequent release of greenhouse gases are ...
Climate change and the BEC zones: A study of climate change effects on the CDFmm and CWHxm BEC subzones Deland, Jean Pierre; Roy, Simon; Strom, Jeremy (Electronic version published by Vancouver Island University, 2018-04-12)The aim of this research was to conduct various surveys and collect data at multiple locations on South Eastern Vancouver Island. The study tested the gathered data against several statistical methods and explored if ...
Best practices in a changing climate: Investigating the role of local government planners in climate change mitigation Gill-Maher, Kira (Electronic version published by Vancouver Island University, 2021-04)In 2018, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) identified that the global target for climate change mitigation must be a limit of 1.5 ºC warming – a target that requires rapid reductions in greenhouse gas ...