Agenda

11th North American Forest Ecology Agenda 

 

A draft of the detailed program (posted May 16) is available here (and is also shown below).

 

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Keynote Speakers

We are pleased to announce the following keynote talks (note titles for the talks are tentative; scheduling of these talks is to be determined):

Research and practice in forest conservation and restoration in north Europe.Lena Gustafsson, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Uppsala

Lena Gustafsson, SLU

Lena Gustafsson, SLU

Silviculture in the face of future uncertainty: is the past still relevant?Tony D’Amato, University of Vermont, BurlingtonTony D'Amato

If we plant, what should we plant?  Matching seed sources to new climates. – Sally Aitken, University of British Columbia, Vancouver

Aitken - head shot Martin Dee 2015

Anticipation Ecology: Determining When and How to Initiate Forest Restoration and Reclamation.Stephen Murphy,  School of Environment, Resources & Sustainability, University of Waterloo

murphy

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Full Conference Program (May 16)

Monday, June 19
08h00 – 17h00 Registration Lister Center upstairs hallway
08h30 – 19h00 Poster viewing Wild Rose Room
 
 Opening Session Maple Leaf Room
08h30 – 08h45 name?  Conference opening, welcome
08h45 – 09h15 John Stadt Alberta’s forests
09h15 – 10h00 Plenary – Stephen Murphy Anticipation Ecology: Determining When and How to Initiate Forest Restoration and Reclamation
 
10h00 – 10h15 BREAK
   
Special Session: Linear disturbances in boreal forests and peatlands Maple Leaf Room
10h15 – 10h30 G Castilla Introduction
10h30 – 10h45 A Dabros, HEJ Hammond, B Pinno, D Langor Edge effects of low impact seismic lines on upland forest plant communities in northern Alberta
10h45 – 11h00 SE Nielsen, A Filicetti, CK van Rensen, T Vinge, VJ Lieffers Patterns in seismic line vegetation recovery and landscape restoration planning in Alberta’s oil sands
11h00 – 11h15 E Bayne, S Wilson, H Lankau, J Tigner, J Gregoire Wildlife response to energy sector recovery: The importance of sampling methodology
11h15 – 11h30 GJ McDermid, S Chen, C Feduck, MF Wu, J Hird, T Tan, SE Nielsen, J Linke, G Castilla The role of UAVs in linear disturbance restoration and monitoring, contributions from the BERA project
11h30 – 11h45 M Strack, S Saraswati, M Brummell, B Xu Impact of access roads on peatland greenhouse gas exchange
11h45 – 12h00 Discussion

 

Special Session: Adapting forest management to climate change: the state of the science and applications Aurora Room
10h15 – 10h30 J Edwards A pan-Canadian approach for adapting sustainable forest management to a changing climate
10h30 – 10h45 M Johnston Integrating climate change adaptation into forest management in the Canadian forest sector: The state of play
10h45 – 11h00 S Andrews-Key, CP Laroque, M Johnston Vulnerability and adaptation to climate change in sustainable forest management and the forest industry in Saskatchewan
11h00 – 11h15 DL Peterson, JE Halofsky Real-world forest adaptation: Moving from information to implementation in the western United States
11h15 – 11h30 C Swanston Real-world forest adaptation: Tools, examples, and lessons from the Northwoods
11h30 – 12h00 Discussion

 

Natural disturbance – contributed talks Prairie Room
10h15 – 10h30 S Cumming, N Bokenge Estimating the collapse rate of boreal aspen stands
10h30 – 10h45 C Stockdale, E Macdonald, M Flannigan A century of landscape change in the southern Rocky Mountains and Foothills of Alberta
10h45 – 11h00 C Stockdale, N Mcloughlin, M Flannigan, E Macdonald Using historic landscape vegetation structure for ecological restoration: effects on burn probability in the Bob Cree
11h00 – 11h15 D Peterson Restoration treatment effects on wildfire severity and post-fire vegetation recovery
11h15 – 11h30 S Das Gupta, RC Errington, BD Pinno Fire severity affects the spatial patterns of jack pine forests in nutrient poor boreal ecosystems
11h30 – 11h45 AJ Larson, RT Belote Forest structure and fuel loads following single and repeat fires in mixed-conifer forest

 

 Wildlife – contributed talks Glacier room
10h15 – 10h30 TA Larsen, SE Nielsen, GB Stenhouse Nutritional ecology of grizzly bears in a multiple-use landscape and its effects on density, survival, and recovery
10h30 – 10h45 QE Barber, E Whitman, DT Price, M-A Parisien Caribou habitat degradation under changing climate and fire regimes in northern Alberta
10h45 – 11h00 A Saxena, R Serrouya, M Donnelly A unique industry collaboration to recover threatened caribou habitat in the boreal forest
11h00 – 11h15 DEB Reid, N Buda, A Rodgers, J Shuter, T Avgar, GS Brown, J Hagens, SG Newmaster, B Patterson, ID Thompson, JM Fryxell Managed stands providing woodland caribou habitat in northwestern Ontario; Stand characteristics and landscape context
11h15 – 11h30 G Sherman, M Cody Changes in utilization and travel along linear features by woodland caribou, moose and two predators following mechanical site preparation
11h30 – 11h45 RJ Belanger, LN Carbyn, MA Edwards, SE Nielsen Where do the wood bison roam? Habitat selection of the Ronald Lake herd
11h45 – 12h00 BR Nobert, TA Larsen, KE Pigeon, GB Stenhouse, L Finnegan The Impact of mountain pine beetle and mountain pine beetle management on caribou and grizzly bear food supply

 

12h00  13h00 LUNCH

 

Special Session: Post-harvest resilience, ecosystem memory and management of biological legacies Maple Leaf Room
13h00 – 13h30 JF Franklin Ecosystem continuity: the critical role of biological legacies in nature and in management
13h30 – 13h45 C Bergeron, J Pinzon, J Spence Variable retention harvesting, biological legacies and ecosystem memory in relation to improving forest resilience
13h45 – 14h00 G Whitmore Implementation of ecosystem-based management for the maintenance of forest resilience and ecosystem memory
14h00 – 14h15 M Bouchard Provincial forest management, a landscape approach to management of biological legacies
14h15 – 14h30 M Koivula Applying principles of ecosystem memory to restore resilience in heavily managed forests of Fennoscandia
14h30 – 15h00 Discussion

 

Soils & plants – Contributed talks Aurora Room
14h00 – 14h15 B Gendreau-Berthiaume, C Messier, IT Handa How do different forest management strategies influence soil microbial communities and do they persist over time?
14h15 – 14h30 B. Muñoz, L Kenefic, A Weiskittel, I Fernandez Quantifying northern mixedwood soil nutrient availability 50 years following biomass harvesting
14h30 – 14h45 TJ Philpott, JS Barker, CE Prescott, SJ Grayston Limited legacy of variable retention harvesting on fungal communities decomposing fine-roots in coastal temperate rainforests
14h45 – 15h00 JP Battigelli, SM Berch 20 years later: Evaluating the recovery of soil mesofauna on the long-term soil productivity sites in the sub-boreal spruce zone

 

 Dendrochronology – Contributed talks Prairie Room
14h00 – 14h15 CA Copenheaver, M Pulice Dendroarchaeology reveals influence of early-European settlement on forest disturbance regimes in Virginia
14h15 – 14h30 S Fraver, AW D’Amato, M Reinikainen, K Gill, BJ Palik Stand dynamics and structure of old-growth black ash stands in northern Minnesota, USA
14h30 – 14h45 EH Hogg, M Michaelian, T Hook, M Underschultz Recent decline of white spruce growth in drought-affected areas of western Canada
14h45 – 15h00 DW Peterson Climate-growth relationships in Pacific Northwest conifers: accounting for variability within stands and across environmental gradients

 

 Wildlife – contributed talks Glacier Room
14:00-14:15 F Riva, JH Acorn, SE Nielsen Cranberry blue butterfly: habitat use and response to in situ oil sands developments in the Alberta boreal ecoregion
14:15-14:30 L Leston, E Bayne, F Schmiegelow, E Dzus Twenty-four years of birds: long-term effects of forest fragmentation and recovery on boreal bird communities

 

15h00 – 15h15 BREAK

 

15h15 – 16h15 IGNITE Talks Maple Leaf Room
16h15 – 19h00 Poster viewing/reception Wild Rose Room
19h00 – 21h00 Business mtgs
Poplar & Willow Council of Canada: AGM Aurora Room

 

 

Tuesday, June 20
08h00 – 18h00 Registration Lister upstairs hallway
08h30 – 15h00 Poster viewing Wild Rose Room

 

Plenary Maple Leaf Room
09h00 – 09h45 Tony D’Amato Silviculture in the face of future uncertainty: is the past still relevant?

 

09h45 – 10h00 BREAK

 

Special Session: North American Aspen Transect: applied functional ecology north to south Maple Leaf Room
10h00 – 10h15 P Rogers, B Pinno Applied functional ecology in quaking and trembling aspen: one size does not fit all
10h15 – 10h30 RC Errington, BD Pinno Disturbance recovery of understory plant communities in natural and reconstructed boreal aspen stands
10h30 – 10h45 EW Bork, BD Irving The evolution of grazing management within central Alberta’s aspen forests
10h45 – 11h00 S Chhin, GG Wang Climate change and weather impacts on aspen forest communities in the parkland and prairie region of southern Manitoba
11h00 – 11h15 DJ Shinneman, SK McIlroy Aspen stability and regeneration dynamics in isolated mountain ranges of the Great Basin, USA
11h15 – 11h30 K Waring, J Ouzts, M Nabel, L Arciniega, R Baierlein Managing aspen in the US Southwest: developing resilience through regeneration
11h30 – 12h00 Discussion

 

Special Session: The Changing Face of the Northern Forest: The Ongoing Legacy of Beech Bark Disease Aurora Room
10h00 – 10h15 JA Cale Pathosystems, spread, and temporal stages of beech bark disease in North American forests
10h15 – 10h30 RS Morin, S Fei, AM Liebhold, CM Oswalt Beech scale advance and regional forest dynamics in the northern forest
10h30 – 10h45 M Kasson, B Burke, A Metheny, J Garnas A tale of two Neonectria: Dynamics of N. ditissima and N. faginata in the aftermath forests on the Monongahela National Forest, West Virginia, USA
10h45 – 11h00 MT Garrison-Johnston, JA Cale, SA Teale, JD Castello Nutritional physiology influences host tree susceptibility to BBD
11h00 – 11h15 R Wilson Beech bark disease in Canada: current impacts, outlook and management efforts
11h15 – 11h30 MT Garrison-Johnston, JA Cale Planning for the future with beech bark disease: A synthesis of research gaps and management questions
11h30 – 12h00 Discussion

 

Carbon & Nutrients – Contributed talks Prairie Room
10h00 – 10h15 M Aquino, A Velazquez, M Acosta, J Etchevers Carbon concentration variability in three tropical tree species of the Sierra Madre del Sur of Oaxaca, Mexico
10h15 – 10h30 RL Cabuy, S Chhin, C Mbow, D Skole Allometric relationships to determine age in tropical forests: Towards improved estimates of annual rates of carbon sequestration
10h30 – 10h45 D Scott, R Bradley, JP Bellenger, K Rousk, M Gundale, T DeLuca Shifts in the nutrient limitations of tree growth and N fixation along steep atmospheric N deposition gradients in Norway spruce
10h45 – 11h00 S Saraswati, C Parsons, M Strack Can access roads impact carbon dynamics of boreal forested peatlands by altering enzyme activities?
11h00 – 11h15 C Dymond, S Beukema, C Nitschke, KD Coates, R Scheller Carbon sequestration in managed temperate coniferous forests under climate change
11h15 – 11h30 A Teets, S Fraver, D Hollinger, R Seymour, A Weiskittel, A Richardson Linking forest carbon sequestration with annual CO2 flux
11h30 – 11h45 PD Sewell, S Quideau, M Dyck Topographic controls on soil respiration in the boreal forest
11h45 – 12h00 E Chaste, M Girardin, JO Kaplan, J Portier, Y Bergeron, C Haly Simulated forest dynamics in eastern boreal Canada from 1901 to 2012 using the LPJ-LM fire dynamic global vegetation model

 

Reclamation & Restoration – contributed talks Glacier Room
10h00 – 10h15 ACS McIntosh, A Janz, D Farr Life after reclamation: Quantifying ecological recovery of wellsites in Alberta’s forested lands
10h15 – 10h30 L deBortoli, E Li, B Pinno, MD MacKenzie Plant community composition and aspen establishment in response to seeding and weeding treatments on different reclamation soils
10h30 – 10h45 ST Dietrich, MD MacKenzie, JP Battigelli, J Enterina Building a better reclamation soil: Admixing peat, subsoil and biochar following surface mining in northern Alberta
10h45 – 11h00 E Valek, S Landhäusser Challenges of utilizing municipal compost as an amendment in boreal forest reclamation on nutrient poor sites
11h00 – 11h15 P Tremblay, BD Pinno, E Thiffault Effects of land reclamation treatments on the establishment and productivity of trees on a reclaimed oil sands mining site
11h15 – 11h30 M Merlin, F Leishman, R Errington, S Landhäusser, B Pinno Drivers affecting tree performance on upland areas of a reconstructed watershed
11h30 – 11h45 A Howe, S Landhäusser, O Burney, K Mock A seedling-based approach to aspen restoration in the western USA
11h45 – 12h00 C Jones, S Bachmann, V Lieffers, S Landhäusser Rapid aspen and understory plant recovery following forest floor protection on temporary drilling pads

 

12h00  13h00 LUNCH

 

Special Session: Quantifying forest complexity and integrating data into management Maple Leaf Room
13h00 – 13h15 CR Webster, YL Dickinson, C C Kern Silviculture through the lens of forest complexity
13h15 – 13h30 WS Keeton Experimentally testing silvicultural strategies that promote stand structural complexity in northern hardwood forests
13h30 – 13h45 JI Burton The rest of the story: measuring and managing complexity in understory plant communities
13h45 – 14h00 BS Hardiman, MR Saunders, JW Atkins, CM Gough, RT Fahey Applying emerging technologies to applied forest ecology and forest management planning
14h00 – 14h15 RT Fahey, JW Atkins, BS Hardiman, CM Gough Quantifying forest structural complexity: approaches, metrics, and a conceptual framework
14h15 – 15h00 Discussion

 

Special Session: Establishing ecological impacts and thresholds for harvesting of woody bioenergy Aurora Room
13h00 – 13h15 L Venier, T Work, J Klimaszewski, D Morris, J Bowden, M Kwiaton, K Webster, P Hazlett, N Basiliko, E Smenderovac, I Laigle, I Aubin, L Rousseau, D Gravel Biodiversity response to biomass harvesting; the Island Lake Biomass Harvest Experiment
13h15 – 13h30 T Work, L Venier, S Harrisson, A Brodeur There are limited impacts of the full-tree harvest on colonization and emergence dynamics of saproxylic beetles in residual stumps
13h30 – 13h45 J Rudolphi, J Strengbom No support for long-term effects of commercial tree-stump harvest on understory vegetation
13h45 – 14h00 L Rousseau, L Venier, T Handa Long-term responses of soil mesofauna communities to woody debris biomass harvesting in an eastern Canadian boreal forest
14h00 – 14h15 A Hof, J Hjältén, T Work, J Rudolphi, J-M Roberge, T Johansson Simulating the impact of bioenergy extraction on habitat suitability for species on a landscape scale
14h15 – 14h30 J Hoage, L Roussaeu, T Porter, L Venier, N Basiliko, M Hajibabaei Developing a metabarcoding strategy for soil mesofauna to monitor the ecological impacts of intensified biomass harvesting in forestry
14h30 – 14h45 J Hjältén, T Work, J Andersson, T Ranius, F Stenbacka, H Ekvall Bioenergy extraction and saproxylic biodiversity: strategies and thresholds for stump harvesting
14h45 – 15h00 C Boué, T Work, L Venier, S Kembel Impacts of full-tree harvesting on fungal composition in jack pine stands in Eastern, Ontario Canada

 

Silviculture – contributed talks Prairie Room
13h00 – 13h15 T Jones, J Fera Biomass harvesting in the Great Lakes – St. Lawrence Forest: sustainability of increasing utilization in shelterwood harvests
13h15 – 13h30 C Robles, A Velazquez, V Reyes, D Rodriguez, J Etchevers, H de los Santos Effects of fire on basal area relative increment of Pinus hartwegii Lindl. in the Izta-Popo National Park, Mexico
13h30 – 13h45 JS Crotteau, CR Keyes Stand dynamics 11 years after retention harvests in Rocky Mountain lodgepole pine
13h45 – 14h00 V Lieffers, D Sidders, T Keddy, P Blenis Fifteen year growth of planted spruce in variable retention mixedwoods: site preparation and stand composition
14h00 – 14h15 JP Brown,  M Thomas-Van Gundy, TM Schuler Overstory cohort survival in an Appalachian hardwood deferment cutting: 35 year results
14h15 – 14h30 K Hossain, P Comeau Characterizing light across a strip-cut shelterwood in mixed conifer forest of ICH
14h30 – 14h45 NS Rogers, AW D’Amato, R Nyland, L Kenefic, M Twery Long-term regeneration dynamics in northern hardwood forests of the northeast United States
14h45 – 15h00 R Soolanayakanahally, R Gares, W Schroeder Genetic improvement of larch for Canadian Prairies

 

Reclamation & Restoration – contributed talks Glacier Room
13h00 – 13h15 P Pokharel, WJ Choi, GM Jamro, SX Chang Growth, N retranslocation, N uptake and foliar 13C in white spruce seedlings in response to nursery fertilization and field weed control
13h15 – 13h30 J Iqbal Development of the Restoration Roughness Index (RRI) as a standardized measure of restoration
13h30 – 13h45 S Bockstette, B Pinno, M Dyck, S Landhäusser Restricted rooting space in mine reforestation
13h45 – 14h00 N Scott, J Karst, S Landhäusser, G Pec Does stand composition impact ectomycorrhizal community composition and species richness on an oil sands reclamation site?
14h00 – 14h15 SS Kanekar, JA Cale, J Klutsch, N Ukrainetz, N Berger, A Cheniveerappan,  N Erbilgin The role of mycorrhizal fungi in constitutive and induced defenses of lodgepole pine
14h15 – 14h30 M Yarmuch South Bison Hill Research Watershed: Science-based guidance on the appropriate soil capping thickness for reclamation of Clearwater overburden
14h30 – 14h45 M Yarmuch South Bison Hill Research Watershed: Science-based guidance on the appropriate soil capping thickness for reclamation of Clearwater overburden
14h45 – 15h00 C Farnden Influences on tree growth of soil capping material over deep deposit tailings sand

 

15h00 – 15h15 BREAK

 

Special Session: Beyond twitter and blogs: Communicating science to your core audience Maple Leaf Room
15h15 – 15h30 M Pyper Using drones and dialogue to inform new approaches to resource management
15h30 – 15h45 K Illerbrun Cultivating receptivity: Creating engagement through citizen science and outreach at the ABMI
15h45 – 16h00 M Proulx Re-writing the way Universities share science with the public by shifting away from traditional approaches
16h00 – 16h15 B Palik, A D’Amato Operational-scale experiments: connecting scientists with managers using real world forestry
16h15 – 16h45 Discussion

 

Special Session: Managing Riparian areas and Wetlands in an Integrated Approach to Forest Ecosystem Management Aurora Room
15h15 – 15h30 M Darveau Wetlands and riparian zones 101: definitions, delineation, and implications for ecosystem-based management
15h30 – 15h45 KJ Devito, JL Morissette Generalizing riparian hydrologic function in a heterogeneous landscape, Western Boreal Plain, Alberta, Canada
15h45 – 16h00 D Farina, M Darveau Do landform and topography affect the degree of overlapping between wetlands and riparian zones? A study in eastern Canada
16h00 – 16h15 DJH Sleep, B Gingras Regulatory and voluntary best-management practices for wetlands and riparian zones in boreal commercial forests: synthesis and gaps
16h15 – 16h30 M Donnelly Planning and operational approaches to the conservation and management of wetland and riparian areas in the Boreal Plains: the Al-Pac experience
16h45 – 17h00 M-E Sigouin, D Bazely, G McCartney, C McDonell Wetland and aquatic conservation and management practice in the Boreal Shield: the Tembec experience
17h00-17h15 Discussion

 

Silviculture – contributed talks Prairie Room
15h15 – 15h30 B Frey Stand structure and regeneration of American beech at its southern range margin
15h30 – 15h45 JP Parra-Piedra, HM De Los Santos-Posadas, AM Fierros-Gonzalez, JR Valdez-Lazalde, JL Romo-Lozano Growth and financial assessment for plantations of Pinus patula Schiede. ex Schltdl. et Cham. at Zacualpan, Veracruz, Mexico
15h45 – 16h00 R Fierros-Mateo, HM De los Santos-Posadas, AM Fierros-Gonzalez, F Cruz-Cobos Growth and yield of fast-growing plantations of Pinus chapiensis (Martinez) Andresen at Tlatlauquitepec, Puebla, Mexico
16h00 – 16h15 F Cortini, PG Comeau, V Strimbu, M Bokalo, EH Hogg, S Huang Survival functions for nine western boreal and northern montane tree species
16h15 – 16h30 FO Oboite, PG Comeau Release response of black spruce and white spruce due to overstory lodgepole pine mortality following  mountain pine beetle attack
16h30 – 16h45 D Kweon, P Comeau The maximum size-density relationship for trembling aspen
16h45 – 17h00 P Comeau, M Bokalo Development and dynamics of young aspen-spruce mixedwood stands in western Canadian Boreal Forests

 

Natural disturbance – contributed talks Glacier Room
15h15 – 15h30 PJ Burton Constraints, Filters and Contingencies in Forest Recovery After Disturbance
15h30 – 15h45 J Kleinman, S Ford, J Hart Catastrophic wind and salvage harvesting effects on woodland communities
15h45 – 16h00 J Hart, L Cox Incorporating intermediate-severity disturbances in oak stand development
16h00 – 16h15 E Fien, S Fraver, A Teets, D Hollinger Factors influencing tree mortality risk in a late-successional conifer forest in central Maine, USA
16h15 – 16h30 J Klutsch, A Najar, N Erbilgin Native pathogen-induced changes in jack pine have cascading effects on the invasive mountain pine beetle and its interactions with resource-sharing insects
16h30 – 16h45 E Macdonald, L Schroeder, J Steinke, V Lieffers Beyond beetle: Natural regeneration after Mountain Pine Beetle outbreaks in Alberta

 

 

17h30 – 18h30 Reception University of Alberta Faculty Club
18h30 – 20h00 Banquet
20h00 – 23h00 Entertainment

 

 

 

Wednesday, June 21 – Field Trips

 

Field trips will leave from Lister Centre between 7:30 and 8:30 am and return by 4:30 – 7 pm. Lunches will be provided for all registered participants.

 

 

 

 

Thursday, June 22
08h00 – 18h00 Registration Lister upstairs hallway
Plenary Maple Leaf Room
09h00 – 09h45 Sally Aitken If we plant, what should we plant?  Matching seed sources to new climates
09h45 – 10h00 BREAK

 

Special Session: Assisted Migration in Practice: Ecological Risks and Benefits Maple Leaf Room
10h00 – 10h30 J Pedlar, D McKenney An Overview of assisted migration in forestry
10h30 – 10h45 AW D’Amato, B Palik, C Looney, R Slesak, M Slater Black ash, emerald ash borer, and climate change: assisting the replacement of a foundational species
10h45 – 11h00 B Palik, A D’Amato, L Nagel, J Muller Transitioning red pine forests to a warmer, drier future: assisting the replacement of an iconic forest type
11h00 – 11h15 A Hamann Assisted migration in reforestation: risk of action versus risk of status quo management
11h15 – 11h30 C Messier Realities and possibilities: what science tells us about the potential of assisted migration
11h30 – 12h00 Discussion

 

Special Session: Seeing the forest through the understory: promoting and maintaining diversity in contemporary hardwood forests Aurora Room
10h00 – 10h15 JI Burton Does gap-based silviculture accelerate the development of old-growth characteristics?
10h15 – 10h30 LE Frelich Conservation strategies for native forest plant communities affected by invasive earthworms, deer, and fragmentation
10h30 – 10h45 MA Jenkins, LH Keitzer, CR Webster Understory response to 17 years of controlled deer hunting in Indiana state parks
10h45 – 11h00 S Greenler Spatial variation in regeneration in small shelterwood gaps and surrounding forest matrix in the Central Hardwood Region
11h00 – 11h15 MB Walters, JL Willis, EJ Farinosi, JP Hartman Low tree regeneration diversity: Can the legacies of forest and deer management practices be overcome with new management approaches
11h15 – 11h30 JL Willis, MB Walters Seedling recruitment dynamics on decaying coarse woody debris
11h30 – 12h00 Discussion

 

 

 

Plant community ecology – Contributed talks Prairie room
10h00 – 10h15 M Ross, M Carrington, S Subedi Spatiotemporal and functional approaches clarify the successional trajectory of a dry tropical forest
10h15 – 10h30 JP Sah, MS Ross, LG Pearlstine, PL Ruiz Spatio-temporal pattern in plant communities along hydrology gradient in Everglades Tree Islands
10h30 – 10h45 EB Lilles, A Dhar, KD Coates Retention level affects dynamics of understory plant community recovery in north-temperate coniferous forests
10h45 – 11h00 K Chapman, K Baldwin The development of boreal forest Associations for the Canadian National Vegetation Classification (CNVC)
11h00 – 11h15 CMA Franklin, SE Macdonald, SE Nielsen Effects of prescribed burns and partial harvesting on understory vegetation in boreal mixedwood forests
11h15 – 11h30 R Montgomery, K Rice, D Kastendick, B Palik Effects of elevated CO2 and temperature on peatland community composition and structure
11h30 – 11h45 J Caspersen, N Zimmerman, A Rigling, E Thuerig Complementarity of gymnosperms and angiosperms: disentangling the effects of phenology, leaf morphology, and temperature
11h45 – 12h00 J Steinke, E Macdonald, A McIntosh, L Schroeder Effects of mountain pine beetle attacks on understory vegetation in lodgepole pine forests in Western Alberta

 

Conservation – contributed talks Glacier room
10h00 – 10h15 L Cole, M Newton, J Bailey, M Powers Overstory and understory responses after thinning in 50-year-old Douglas-fir and Douglas-fir/western hemlock stands in Oregon
10h15 – 10h30 M Kwiaton Examining effects of disturbance type and intensity on deadwood dynamics in jack pine dominated stands: a FVS-DbD modelling exercise
10h30 – 10h45 KM Potter, BS Crane, WH Hargrove Project CAPTURE: A U.S. national prioritization framework for tree species threatened by climate change and other threats
10h45 – 11h00 C Chisholm, C Elkin Examining Biodiversity in Old Forest and Old Growth Forest Stand Structures Using Aerial Laser Scanning
11h00 – 11h15 K Harper, C Staicer, L Gray, A Westwood Biodiversity and ecosystem functioning of forested wetlands across Atlantic Canada
11h15 – 11h30 ZG MacDonald, I Anderson, JH Acorn, SE Nielsen Using butterfly assemblages on lake islands to assess applications of insular biogeography to the conservation of terrestrial biodiversity
11h30 – 11h45 I Phoebus, G Segelbacher, GB Stenhouse Do large carnivores use riparian zones? Ecological implications for forest management
11h45 – 12h00

 

12h00 – 13h00 LUNCH

 

 

 

Special session: Effects of reclamation practices on ecosystem succession after oil-sands mining in boreal Alberta Maple Leaf Room
13h00 – 13h15 MD MacKenzie, J Hogberg, S Dietrich, J Battigelli Can reclamation of above and belowground processes be measured with a functional similarity index?
13h15 – 13h30 D MacKenzie, MA Naeth  Surface soil handling and storage impacts on plant propagules and establishment of native plant communities
13h30 – 13h45 SM Landhäusser, E Macdonald, VJ Lieffers Drivers of spatial and temporal patterns in vegetation during spontaneous early colonization of boreal reclamation sites
13h45 – 14h00 BD Pinno, S Das Gupta Coarse woody debris applications in oil sands reclamation impact plant community and soil properties
14h00 – 14h15 J Karst, G Pec, S Hupperts, N Scott, S Landhäusser  Establishment of ectomycorrhizal fungal communities following reclamation
14h15 – 14h30 A Dhar, P G Comeau, R Vassov Ecosystem assembly ideas and their application in oil sands reclamation
14h30 – 15h00 Discussion

 

Invasive Species – Contributed Talks Aurora Room
13h00 – 13h15 JA Cale, M Muskens, A Najar, G Ishangulyyeva, A Hussain, SS Kanekar, J Klutsch, S Taft, N Erbilgin Rapid monoterpene induction promotes the susceptibility of jack pine to mountain pine beetle colonization but not to beetle-vectored fungi
13h15 – 13h30 BV Iannone III, KM Potter, K-A Dixon Hamil, W Huang, H Zhang, Q Guo, CM Oswalt, CW Woodall, S Fei Evidence of biotic resistance to nonnative invasions in eastern U.S. Forests: A macroscale study
13h30 – 13h45 GS Frank, MR Saunders, MA Jenkins Understory response to invasive shrub removal techniques in hardwood forests

 

Climate change  – contributed talks Prairie Room
13h00 – 13h15 M Abrams Mesophication and drought vulnerability is eastern forests
13h15 – 13h30 S Andrews-Key, C Laroque, M Johnston Vulnerability and adaptation to climate change in sustainable forest management and the forest industry in Saskatchewan
13h30 – 13h45 MM Tucker, DM Kashian Can the arrangement of pine barrens mediate the spread of wildfires under various climate scenarios?
13h45 – 14h00 D Montwé, M Isaac-Renton, A Hamann, H Spiecker Frost imprints in tree-rings to assess cold adaptation in Pinus contorta
14h00 – 14h15 AR Hof,  CC Dymond, DJ Mladenoff Effects of intentional alteration of tree species composition on forest carbon pools in the face of climate change
14h15 – 14h30 A Dawson, L D’Orangeville, M Itter Effects of stand dynamics on resistance to climate anomalies and disturbance in the Canadian boreal forest
14h30 – 14h45 JR Foster, AW D’Amato Forecasting migration rates of montane species under climate change with a spatially dynamic vegetation model
14h45 – 15h00 A Gõmez-Guerrero, WR Horwath, L Silva, T Doane, A Correa-Diaz, L Castruita-Esparza, J Villanueva Intrinsic water use efficiency of tree forest species at different sites in Mexico

 

Conservation – contributed talks Glacier Room
13h00 – 13h15 L Echiverri, E Macdonald, J Stadt, B White The effect of harvesting on the relationship between Depth-to-Water values and understory vegetation
13h15 – 13h30 AW Schoettle Proactively Managed Conservation Areas (PMCAs) as an approach to conserve and sustain healthy forest ecosystems
13h30 – 13h45 J Dennett, J Gould, E Macdonald, S Nielsen Quantifying detection rates for understory vascular plant species using decoy field trials
13h45 – 14h00 SF Bartels, E Macdonald Changes in bryophyte diversity and composition along a soil wetness gradient in managed boreal forests assessed using topographic wetness index
14h00 – 14h15 L Mao, J Dennett, CW Bater, P Tompalski, NC Coops, D Farr, M Kohler, B White,  JJ Stadt, SE Nielsen Using airborne laser scanning to predict plant species richness and assess conservation threats in the oil sands region of Alberta
14h15 – 14h30 C Elkin Evaluating how landscape heterogeneity influences the resilience and recovery of sub-boreal forest diversity
14h30 – 14h45 S Zhao, N Erbilgin Source or sink: functional role of residual overstory lodgepole pine (Pinus contorta) trees in post-mountain pine beetle

 

15h00 – 15h15 BREAK

 

Closing Plenary   Maple Leaf Room
15h15 – 16h00 Lena Gustafsson Research and practice in forest conservation and restoration in northern Europe
16h00 – 16h30 Conference close, announcement of next conference

 

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NAFEW 2017 In-Conference Field Trips Wednesday June 21, 2017

The following in-conference tours are available.  Please indicate you tour preference on your registration form (indicate first, second and third choice). 

A. Ecology and Sustainable Management of Mixedwood Forests.  This tour will visit an area near Fawcett Lake, located in the Central Mixedwood Natural Subregion, ~2 hours north of Edmonton.  We will talk about the forests in this area the ecology and management of mixtures of trembling aspen and white spruce.  We will see and discuss regeneration of aspen, spruce and mixedwood stands and associated silviculture practices and we will discuss the role of fire and fire management. Sustainable forest management and forest management planning in the area will be explored. Lunch is planned for the shores of Fawcett Lake (weather permitting). Tour Leader: Phil Comeau

B. Aspen and Bison Management in Elk Island National Park.  This tour will visit Elk Island National park one hour east of Edmonton in the heart of the Aspen Parkland Ecoregion. This park is home to free roaming herds of both plains and wood bison along with numerous other wildlife including elk, moose and deer. On this tour we will discuss the ecology and management of aspen and mixedwood forests, wetlands, bison, and recreational use. There will also be a short 4 km hike (over gentle terrain), lunch near the interpretive centre at Astotin Lake, and a bison handling demonstration with parks staff. Tour Leader: Brad Pinno.

C. Alberta Tree Improvement and Seed Centre (ATISC) and Smoky Lake Nursery. Both the ATISC and nursery are located near Smoky Lake Alberta, ~2.5 hrs northeast of Edmonton. At ATISC participants will visit the provincial seed bunker, seed research lab, and a commercial seed orchard.  Our Nursery visit will showcase commercial production of ~60 species of native shrubs used in reclamation along with millions of lodgepole pine and white spruce seedlings grown for reforestation. Lunch will be provided on-site. Tour Leaders: Barb Thomas and Simon Landhausser.

D. Edmonton’s Urban Forests and Urban Forestry. Edmonton’s urban forest contributes to quality of life for its residents and visitors.  The North Saskatchewan River valley is a significant feature of the city and contains Canada’s largest expanse of urban parkland (7400 ha and 48 km in length) and includes 22 ravines that form the fabric of the city.  The urban forest extends into the built-up city through neighbourhood parks and boulevard trees and includes one of the largest surviving populations of urban American Elm in North America. On this tour we will visit some of these areas and discuss the challenges of managing this urban forest including rewilding of park areas, forest insect and disease issues, and urban wildlife. Lunch will be provided on-site. Tour Leader: John Stadt and City of Edmonton staff.

E. Poplar Genetics and Management.  This tour will visit the research fields of Alberta-Pacific Forest Industries Inc., located ~2.5 hrs northeast of Edmonton,  showcasing their hybrid poplar breeding program, a pure balsam poplar tree improvement program designed for use on their wider forest management area and several other exotic and native species of poplars, aspens and birch. Lunch will be provided on-site.  Tour Leader: Barb Thomas. (note – this in conference tour was added to our program on April 6).

 

For all tours we recommend that participants bring suitable footwear (for light hiking), and light rainwear (this is the beginning of our “rainy” season – so it can rain).

1981-2010 Climate Normals for Edmonton: Average June temperatures are 15.5C (min=9.9C, max=21.0C).  June total precipitation averages 77.5 mm.

(go to:  Environment Canada)

 

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Post-conference tour:  to Fort McMurray to learn about Oilsands activities and reclamation.  This tour will depart from Edmonton on June 23 and return to Edmonton the evening of June 25.  Cost the tour will be approximately $500/person (double occupancy) or $700 (single occupancy) to cover transportation, accommodation (2 nights; Friday and Saturday) and some meals.  This tour is being organized by Simon Landhausser and Brad Pinno.  (Note:  we have had to cancel our planned post-conference tour to the Rocky Mountains, and the one day post conference tour to the Alpac research fields).

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Special Sessions at NAFEW 2017

The following sessions have been accepted and will be included in the program.

Scheduling of sessions is still to be determined.

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Session Title: Post-harvest resilience, ecosystem memory and management of biological legacies

 Session Summary: This session will summarize the ecosystem resilience framework based on the developing concept of ecosystem memory, and present approaches for including it in effective management of biological legacies in newly harvested North American and heavily managed European forests.

Principal Organizers:

Colin Bergeron, University of Alberta, cb1@ualberta.ca

Jaime Pinzon, University of Alberta, jpinzon@ualberta.ca

Speakers:

  • Jerry Franklin (University of Washington) – Ecosystem continuity: the critical role of biological legacies in nature and in management
  • Jaime Pinzon and Colin Bergeron (University of Alberta) – Variable retention harvesting, biological legacies and ecosystem memory in relation to improving forest resilience?
  • Gordon Whitmore (Daishowa Marubeni International Ltd.) – Industrial practices to improve forest resilience via management of biological legacies
  • Mathieu Bouchard (Quebec, Ministère des Forêts, de la Faune et des Parcs) – Provincial forest management, a landscape approach to management of biological legacies
  • Matti Koivula (University of Eastern Finland) – Applying principles of ecosystem memory to restore resilience in heavily managed forests of Fennoscandia

Session Description: Forest disturbances leave a heterogeneous mosaic of biological legacies (Lindenmayer and Franklin 2002) that contribute to structural and functional recovery of post-disturbance ecosystems (Turner et al. 1998). These legacies of pre-disturbance environments provide a sort of ‘ecosystem memory’ that guides post-disturbance reorganization toward the variation of pre-disturbance baselines. Management of biological legacies that fosters ecological memory in disturbed areas will improve resilience and decrease the risk of unacceptable changes in structure and function of forest ecosystems in the face of global environmental change (Johnstone et al. 2016). The overarching goal of this session is to show that biological legacies can be managed to improve post-disturbance forest resilience.

In our first keynote presentation (30 min), Dr. Jerry Franklin, author of the foundational work in this field, will summarize the relevant concepts and provide links among forest resilience, biological legacies and ecosystem memory. This presentation will demonstrate that ecosystem memory acquired via persistence of biological legacies contributes to the reorganization of forest ecosystem toward a pre-disturbance equilibrium state. The talk will also underscore the fact that loss of ecosystem memory generates a resilience debt that may trigger abrupt shifts in forest ecosystems, and that unpredictable characteristics of individual disturbances, interactions among disturbances and climate variability collectively affect ecosystem resilience. This developing ecosystem resilience framework will be illustrated with examples mostly from North American disturbances, as drawn largely from his upcoming new book entitled “Ecological Forest Management”. The talk will suggest how biological legacies may be used to help resource managers anticipate and foster forest resilience.

The four following talks (15 min each) will link concepts presented by Dr. Franklin to applications in boreal forest management. The first talk will show how ecosystem based management via variable retention harvesting at the EMEND site can be used as a strategy to promote the use of biological legacies in post-harvest stands and foster ecosystem memory in several ecosystem components. The following talk will exemplify how best industrial forestry practices may be implemented on the ground via variable retention harvesting in order to promote biological legacies in post-harvest stands. The third talk will present a perspective on how ecosystem based forest management is being promoted, implemented and regulated by the government of Quebec in order to foster ecosystem resilience. The fourth talk will outline how principles of ecosystem memory are being applied to restore resilience in heavily managed boreal forests of northern Europe.

Finally, the 30-min discussion will be devoted to specific points such as:  The role of ecosystem memory in forest restoration; Application of strategies and concepts to other disturbances (e.g. energy sector); and, questions and general discussion.

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Session Title: A North American Aspen Transect: applied functional ecology north to south

Session Summary: Trembling aspen (Populus tremuloides) occurs across the continent, but displays different functional qualities under widely varying conditions.  Not only do diverse ecologies affect aspen, but a lengthy list of human-induced alterations present challenges for the sustainable management of these keystone systems.  In the spirit of bridging science-stewardship divides, this session will explore practical, ecologically-based, actions to restore resilience in systems threatened by climate change, herbivory, land conversion, past management, residential development, and other practices.

Principal Organizers:

Paul Rogers, Utah State University, p.rogers@usu.edu

Brad Pinno, Canadian Forest Service, brad.pinno@canada.ca

 Speakers:

  • Paul Rogers (Utah State University) and Brad Pinno (Canadian Forest Service) – Applied functional ecology in quaking and trembling aspen: one size does not fit all
  • Ruth Errington and Brad Pinno (Canadian Forest Service) – Disturbance recovery of understory plant communities in natural and reconstructed boreal aspen stands
  • Edward Bork and Barry Irving  (U of Alberta) – The evolution of grazing management within central Alberta’s aspen forests
  • Sophan Chhin (West Virginia Univ.) and G. Geoff Wang (Clemson Univ.)- Climate change and weather impacts on aspen forest communities in the parkland and prairie region of southern Manitoba
  • Douglas Shinneman and Susan McIlroy (U.S. Geological Survey) – Aspen stability and regeneration dynamics in isolated mountain ranges of the Great Basin, U.S.A
  • Kristen Waring (Northern Arizona Univ.) – Management of aspen forests in the southwest

Session Description: In the spirit of bridging science-stewardship divides, this session will explore practical, ecologically-based, actions to restore resilience in systems threatened by climate change, herbivory, land conversion, past management, residential development, and other practices.  In harmony with NAFEW’s overarching charge, we will recruit presentations along a broad geographic transect from the boreal north, along the spine of the Canadian-USA Rocky Mountains, to the desert plateaus of the Southwest.  Our mission will be to explore both common and novel aspen communities where the research frontier can inform more appropriate ‘functional ecology’ management.  A driving paradigm in forest ecology is emulation of natural processes in practical applications. This session will take that approach for aspen ecosystems to the next level: through presentations and a summary discussion we aim to match current ecological understanding with practical forest application.  Our ‘transect’ motif will ensure the widest geographic diversity in order to expand attendees’ knowledge of North American aspen conditions and practices.  Our hope is that through thoughtful information exchange participants will come away with a trove of new management tools and insights, technical resources, and professional connections for addressing aspen resource issues at local, regional, and continental scales.

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Session Title: Establishing ecological impacts and thresholds for harvesting of woody bioenergy

Session Summary: To evaluate whether forest biomass can be considered a sustainable approach for climate change mitigation, we will provide recent empirical evidence from a large number of species groups on the ecological effects of biomass removal that can be used to develop specific targets for deadwood retention.

Principal Organizers:

Timothy Work, Université du Québec à Montréal, work.timothy@uqam.ca

Lisa Vernier, Canadian Forest Service, Great Lakes Region, Lisa.Venier@Canada.ca

Speakers:

  • Lisa Venier (Canadian Forest Service, Great Lakes Region) – Biodiversity response to biomass harvesting – the Island Lake Biomass Harvest Experiment
  • Timothy Work (Université du Québec à Montréal) – There are limited impacts of the full-tree harvest on colonization and emergence dynamics of saproxylic beetles in residual stumps
  • Jörgen Rudolphi (Sveriges lantbruksuniversitet) – No support for long-term effects of commercial tree-stump harvest on understory vegetation
  • Laurent Rousseau (Université du Québec à Montréal) – Long-term responses of soil mesofauna communities to woody debris biomass harvesting in an eastern Canadian boreal forest
  • Anouschka Hof (Sveriges lantbruksuniversitet) – Simulating the impact of bioenergy extraction on habitat suitability for species on a landscape scale
  • Jesse Hogue (Laurentian University) – Developing a metabarcoding strategy for soil mesofaunal communities to monitor the ecological impacts of intensified biomass harvesting in forestry
  • Joakim Hjältén (Sveriges lantbruksuniversitet) – Bioenergy extraction and saproxylic biodiversity: strategies and thresholds for stump harvesting
  • Cédric Boué (Université du Québec à Montréal) – Impacts of full-tree harvesting on fungal diversity in residual stumps

 Session Description: Effective climate change mitigation depends heavily on the development of alternative energy sources other than fossil carbon. In wood-producing countries, energy production will be based in part on woody biomass from residuals of forest harvest including slash, downed deadwood and stumps. For resident biodiversity, biomass harvesting may pose a significant conservation risk that will be realized long before observable effects of climate change. Thus sustainable approaches to climate mitigation will depend on clear evaluations of the impacts of biomass removal as well as empirically derived targets for deadwood retention.

In this symposium we have selected examples of ongoing research on ecological impacts from biomass removal experiments in conifer forests of North America and Northern Europe.  These projects draw from different perspectives in each region that compliment the theme of this year’s NAFEW. In the North American case studies, where biomass harvesting has only recently been considered, much of the research is conservation oriented and focus on maintaining species and ecological legacies. In contrast, in case studies from Northern Europe with a longer history of biomass harvesting, much of the emphasis is on restoration of habitat elements and increasing populations of red-listed species.

The research profiled in this symposium spans a variety of taxa including wood-inhabiting fungi (Boué), soil-mesofauna (Hogue, Rousseau), litter-dwelling arthropods (Vernier), saproxylic insects (Work, Hjaltén) and herbaceous plants (Rudolphi) and thus will be useful ecosystem-level impacts of biomass harvesting. It will also provide the opportunity to compare and evaluate novel approaches to biodiversity assessment and ecologically relevant guidelines for how best (or whether) to implement biomass harvesting. For example, Hogue and Rousseau will provide possibly contrasting visions of soil mesofaunal response that stem from both molecular and morphological approaches to species identification. Rousseau will also provide evidence of the relative merits of a traditional taxonomic approach to biodiversity inventories as compared to an approach based on functional traits. Work will provide a novel approach to assessing habitat quality in stumps based on colonization/emergence rates. Based on abstracts we will develop a list of questions to be addressed in the synthesis discussion that will be provided to speakers prior to the meeting to facilitate an in-depth discussion of the state of the research on this topic and future research requirements.

This symposium will be well placed at the 2017 NAFEW because of its applicability to the development ‘green’ energy from forests. We anticipate that much of the program at this year’s NAFEW will turn on restoration/mitigation efforts related to Alberta’s oil sands. We feel our symposium will complement presentations aimed at minimizing the footprint of the oil sands by discussing active research that will help diversify and move the forest sector towards the alternative energy sector.

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 Session Title: Seeing the forest through the understory: promoting and maintaining diversity in contemporary hardwood forests.

 Session Summary: Recent decades have seen dramatic declines in the diversity and stability of forest understory plant communities, with profound consequences for perpetuating diverse forest canopies and an array of ecosystem services; however, researchers and managers are uncovering mechanisms and testing new approaches for restoring this critical layer.

 Principal Organizers:

Chris Webster, MTU, cwebster@mtu.edu

Yvette Dickinson, MTU, yldickin@mtu.edu

Speakers:

  • Julia Burton (Utah State University) – Does gap-based silviculture accelerate the development of old-growth characteristics?
  • Lee Frelich (University of Minnesota) – Conservation strategies for native forest plant communities affected by invasive earthworms, deer, and fragmentation
  • Mike Jenkins (Purdue University) – Understory response to 17 years of controlled deer hunting in Indiana state parks
  • Patricia Raymond (Ministère des Forêts, de la Faune et des Parcs, Québec) – Diversity of yellow birch-conifer stands understories managed with gap-based approaches
  • Mike Saunders (Purdue University) – Increased understory richness because of deer herbivory?  It is all a matter of ecological context.
  • Mike Walters (Michigan State University) – Low tree regeneration diversity: Can the legacies of forest and deer management practices be overcome with new management approaches.
  • John Willis (Mississippi State University) – Early factors driving down tree species diversity in northern hardwood forests.

Session Description: Declines in the diversity of herbaceous and woody species in hardwood forests are increasingly common.  The mechanisms associated with these declines are complex, but have generally been associated singularly or interactively with land use change, forest management, ungulate herbivory, invasive species, nitrogen deposition, and changing microsite conditions.  The vast majority of plant diversity in forest ecosystems resides in this layer which plays a critical role in the perpetuation of overstory tree diversity and provisioning of ecosystem services.   Forest managers are increasingly tasked with maintaining and/or promoting forest diversity.  The success of these efforts, however, will depend on an improved understanding of the drivers of decline and how and if they can be effected through proactive management of this key layer.   To these ends, we have brought together a suit of researchers from across the eastern hardwood forest region to explore active protection and restoration of understory diversity in light of local drivers of decline. By focusing on the active protection and restoration of diversity in the regeneration layer, this session will directly address the NAFEW 2017 theme of “Sustaining Forests: From Restoration to Conservation”.

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Session Title: Managing Riparian areas and Wetlands in an Integrated Approach to Forest Ecosystem Management

 Session Summary: This special session aims to better integrate riparian and wetland conservation within the context of ecosystem-based management, by highlighting recent research findings and current knowledge in the context of management paradigms, and associated practices and aims to identify any gaps or redundancies and to generate dialogue around potential solutions.

 Principal Organizers:

Marcel Darveau, Ducks Unlimited Canada and Laval University, m_darveau@ducks.ca

Julienne Morissette, Ducks Unlimited Canada, j_morissette@ducks.ca

 Speakers:

  • Marcel Darveau (Ducks Unlimited Canada and Laval University) –  Wetlands and riparian zones 101: definitions, delineation, and implications for ecosystem-based management.
  • Kevin DeVito (University of Alberta) – Generalizing riparian hydrologic function in a heterogeneous landscape, Western Boreal Plain, Alberta, Canada.
  • Diego Farina (Université Laval) – Do landform and topography affect the degree of overlapping between wetlands and riparian zones? A study in eastern Canada.
  • Darren Sleep (National Council for Air and Stream Improvement) and Beverly Gingras (Ducks Unlimited Canada) – Regulatory and voluntary best-management practices for wetlands and riparian zones in boreal commercial forests: synthesis and gaps.
  • Margaret Donnelly (AL-PAC) – Planning and operational approaches to the conservation and management of wetland and riparian areas in the Boreal Plains: the Al-Pac Experience.
  • Marie-Eve Sigouin (Tembec) – Wetland and aquatic conservation and management practice in the Boreal Shield: the Tembec experience.

 Session Description:  Wetlands and riparian areas occupy approximately 30% of the >2,000,000 km² of commercial boreal forests in boreal North America. These ecosystems provide unique and key biodiversity and ecological functions, and are arguably as important in providing ecosystem services (ES) as the aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems they interconnect.

The ecology and management of riparian areas and wetlands have been a major focus of forestry research since the late 1970’s following criticism and scrutiny regarding forestry effects and water quality/quantity/peak flows. The result has been numerous government regulations and best practices oriented largely toward the protection and management of riparian areas in forest-dominated landscapes. These regulations and best practices relate primarily to minimizing effects of forest roads, stream crossings and of harvesting via placement riparian buffers. More recently, regulations aimed at protecting wetlands to conserve biodiversity and ecosystem services or voluntary approaches protecting high conservation value wetlands under forest certification schemes have also been developed. However, the integration of wetland conservation and riparian management across jurisdictions and the need to relate these aspects of the ecosystem to ecological management objectives and beneficial environmental outcomes have received little attention.

In this special session, through six 15-minute presentations, we will:

  1. Review current definitions, mapping/delineation techniques and ecosystem-based management contexts for these two components of the land-water interface,
  2. Sum up current state of knowledge and research gaps related to factors, processes and disturbance regimes that shape them,
  3. Present a synthesis and analysis of regulations and voluntary best-management practices (BMPs) concerning wetlands and riparian areas, and
  4. Explore how two forest industries handle and operationalise wetland and riparian knowledge in two ecoregions with contrasting hydrologic characteristics.

Following the presentations, a 30-minute panel discussion will address five key questions:

  1. Does riparian management (as currently practiced) fully address/comprise wetlands and their associated ecosystem functions? Do stand level riparian management practices link to landscape management strategies, objectives, practices and outcomes.
  2. Does wetland conservation in forest management (protection, BMPS) adequately capture riparian ecological functions and ecosystem services?
  3. What are some key gaps in understanding?
  4. Are any components of the terrestrial to aquatic areas interface overlooked by focusing on riparian management and wetland conservation?
  5. What recommendations can we make to forest managers and regulators to improve the integration of wetland and riparian management within the context of the terrestrial to aquatic interface in forest dominated-landscapes? (i.e. at multiple scales — stand level strategies linked to landscape design or strategies)

Our goal is to enhance ecosystem-based management by highlighting the importance of these terrestrial-aquatic interfaces by exploring the benefits of an integrated approach to riparian and wetland management. We believe this holistic approach will contribute to the long-term health of both aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems. This special session is well aligned with the NAFEW 2017 theme “Supporting Forests from Restoration to Conservation” and should be of interest to a range of participants including but not limited to research scientists, forests managers, policy-makers, forest certification agencies.

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Session Title: Quantifying forest complexity and integrating data into management

Session Summary: The session will address the topic of conceptualizing and effectively quantifying structural and functional complexity in forest stands and landscapes – using traditional data and emerging technologies – and utilizing this knowledge in designing and evaluating ecologically-focused forest management treatments.

Principal Organizers:

Robert Fahey, University of Connecticut, robert.fahey@uconn.edu

Brady Hardiman, Purdue University, hardimanb@purdue.edu

Speakers:

  • Christopher Webster (Michigan Technological University) -Silviculture through the lens of forest complexity
  • William Keeton (University of Vermont) – Experimentally testing strategies for creating forest structural complexity through silviculture
  • Jan Van Aardt (Rochester Institute of Technology) – Quantifying forest complexity and tree structure with terrestrial laser scanning
  • Julia Burton (Utah State University) – The rest of the story: measuring and managing complexity in ground-layer plant communities
  • Brady Hardiman and Michael Saunders (Purdue University) –   Applying emerging technologies to applied forest ecology and forest management planning
  • Robert Fahey (University of Connecticut) – Quantifying forest structural complexity: approaches, metrics, and a conceptual framework
  • General Discussion: Integrating knowledge on forest complexity into management practice across forest types and ecosystems

 Session Description:  Management focused on ecological functioning, restoration, or resiliency in forests often includes promotion of complexity as a goal. However, the definition of forest complexity can vary greatly depending on the system in question or the ecological functions that are of interest in determining management targets. Different conceptual frameworks that are often employed focus on factors such as tree spatial arrangement, canopy structure, community complexity (species and functional trait diversity), heterogeneity in resource distributions, and spatial and temporal variability in measurable ecosystem functions. Emerging technologies such as terrestrial laser scanning, hyperspectral image-LiDAR fusions, and drone-based imaging are greatly expanding the potential tool-kit for forest ecologists and managers to utilize in quantifying forest complexity. Development and testing of complexity metrics that can characterize a variety of aspects of structural and functional complexity in forest stands and landscapes could be an important near-term goal of applied forest ecology. A conceptual framework and standardized metrics for comparing the effects of both traditional and newly developed, resilience- or ecologically-focused silvicultural treatments on complexity will be useful in predicting treatment impacts and designing new treatments to promote these factors.

However, although understanding how to measure and conceptually define forest complexity could be a very important goal, research focused on quantifying the complexity of composition and arrangement of structural and functional elements in forests has not always been well connected to forest management practice. Effort is needed to determine how best to translate new understanding of forest complexity into silvicultural prescriptions, including experimental tests of silvicultural strategies to promote various aspects of complexity. It will be necessary for ecologists, silviculturalists, and foresters to engage in conversation about how to most effectively integrate new metrics and new understanding of forest complexity, from a variety of data sources, into management actions.

The session engages researchers from a variety of backgrounds to address the topic of how to conceptualize and effectively quantify complexity in forest stands and how to utilize this knowledge in designing and evaluating forest management treatments. We will highlight emerging methods of quantifying forest complexity and how these methods might be best utilized in an applied forest ecology setting. Individual speakers will address a broad spectrum of attributes of forest stands at a variety of spatial scales including: spatial indices of stand and landscape structural complexity, leaf to canopy-level physiology and traits, understory communities and resource environments, and structural assessments using terrestrial laser scanning and other remote sensing techniques. The session will conclude with a general discussion of how the forest management community can incorporate emerging tools and data and synthetic metrics of complexity into assessments of silvicultural practices.

 

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Session Title: Linear disturbances in boreal forests and peatlands

 Session Summary: Linear disturbances are a widespread pernicious feature in boreal forests of North America subject to hydrocarbon development. This special session will deal with ecological issues surrounding the creation and restoration of linear disturbances in the boreal, as well as a forum for discussion of these issues among researchers and practitioners.

Principal Organizers:

Guillermo Castilla, Canadian Forest Service, guillermo.castilla@canada.ca

Maria Strack, University of Waterloo, mstrack@uwaterloo.ca

Greg McDermid, University of Calgary, mcdermid@ucalgary

 Speakers:

  • Anna Dabros (Canadian Forest Service) – Edge effects of low impact seismic lines on upland forest plant communities in northern Alberta
  • Scott Nielsen (University of Alberta) – Patterns in seismic line vegetation recovery and landscape restoration planning in Alberta’s oil sands.
  • Erin Bayne (University of Alberta) -Wildlife response to energy sector recovery: The importance of sampling methodology
  • Greg McDermid (University of Calgary) – The role of UAVs in linear disturbance restoration and monitoring, contributions from the BERA project
  • Maria Strack (University of Waterloo) – Impact of access roads on peatland greenhouse gas exchange.

Session Description: Despite being narrow, linear disturbances such as access roads and seismic lines (linear clearings in the forest resulting from hydrocarbon exploration) are the dominant industrial footprint in many of the boreal forests of western North America, causing landscape fragmentation and hindering recovery efforts for threatened wildlife such as the woodland caribou. To mitigate the host of negative effects these disturbances cause on the boreal forest and its inhabitants, research is being undertaken to better understand underlying mechanism, best practices for the reclamation of these lines are being tested, and new techniques for monitoring vegetation recovery along them are in development. The goal of this special session is to provide relevant information regarding ecological issues surrounding the creation, restoration and monitoring of linear disturbances in the boreal, as well as a forum for discussion of these issues among researchers and practitioners.

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Session Title: The Changing Face of the Northern Forest: The Ongoing Legacy of Beech Bark Disease

Session Summary:  Forest managers and research scientists from across the US and Canada will discuss current status and new findings related to beech bark disease, which results when insects and fungi interact with American beech, causing eventual tree mortality and leading to inexorable changes in forest structure, diversity, and function.

 Principal Organizers:

Mariann Johnston, SUNY-ESF,  mjohnston@esf.edu

Jonathan Cale, University of Alberta, jacale@ualberta.ca

Stacy McNulty, SUNY-ESF, smcnulty@esf.edu

 Speakers:

  • Jon Cale (University of Alberta) – Pathosystems, spread, and temporal stages of beech bark disease in North American forests
  • Randall Morin (USDA Forest Service, Newtown PA) – Insect spread dynamics: Beech Scale Advance and Regional Forest Dynamics in the Northern Forest
  • Matt Kasson (West Virginia University) – Fungal dynamics: A tale of two Neonectria: Dynamics of N. ditissima and N. faginata in the aftermath forests on the Monongahela National Forest, West Virginia, USA
  • Mariann Johnston ( SUNY-ESF) – Role of nutrition:  Nutritional physiology influences host tree susceptibility to BBD
  • Richard Wilson (MNRF Ontario) – Management challenges:  Beech bark disease in Canada: current impacts, outlook, and management efforts
  • Jonathan Cale (University of Alberta) and Mariann Johnston ( SUNY-ESF) – Future directions: Planning for the future with beech bark disease: A synthesis of research gaps and management questions
  • Stacy McNulty (SUNY-ESF) – General Discussion Period

Session Description: Northern forests containing American beech have been undergoing a significant shift in structure and biodiversity due to the relentless expansion of beech bark disease (BBD). Resulting from the introduction of the invasive beech scale insect to Nova Scotia from Europe around 1890 and its interaction with annual phytopathogenic fungi in the genus Neonectria, the disease has progressed steadily across the region for more than a century.  Beech bark disease results in dieback and death of overstory American beech, development of shrub-like thickets of beech root sprouts, and regeneration failure of other tree species such as sugar maple, negatively influencing tree diversity and timber value. Impacts on biodiversity extend to the plant and animal communities, ranging from decreased biodiversity in the herbaceous community to loss of nesting cavities and beech nuts for wildlife. The initial attack stages of this complex disease have been reasonably well described as commencing with the attack of beech scale followed by Neonectria fungal infection, leading to slow crown dieback and eventual tree mortality. However, despite the economic and ecologic repercussions of this disease, its behavior in chronically-affected aftermath forests is poorly understood, with the roles of additional native fungi and at least one native scale insect becoming implicated in disease dynamics. Because American beech is a major component of the northern forest, the ramifications of BBD-induced changes on forest structure and function are immense. Our ability to manage this disease and conserve the forest resource requires a better understanding of the causal organisms and their relationships to each other and the environment. A variety of recent findings regarding the systematics of the causal organisms and their interactions with biotic and abiotic environmental factors may provide new tools and techniques for managing the disease.

In this session, we will bring together scientists from the U.S. and Canada researching various facets of this complex pathosystem, as well as the forest managers responding to it. By bringing together scientists and land managers to share experiences and new findings, this session will encourage a renewed, invigorated and integrated focus on this issue. We anticipate the stimulation of new collaborations and opportunities as we work across borders to understand and manage this historical and ongoing agent of change across the northern forest.

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Session Title: Adapting forest management to climate change: the state of the science and applications

Session Summary: This session will give examples of recent advances in climate change adaptation planning in the U.S. and Canada through development of science-management partnerships, emphasizing consistencies in theories, frameworks, and processes for adaptation, and highlighting examples of development and implementation of adaptation options.

 Principal Organizers:

Jessica Halofsky, University of Washington, jhalo@uw.edu

David L. Peterson, U.S. Forest Service, peterson@fs.fed.us

Speakers:

  • Jason Edwards (Natural Resources Canada) – Adapting sustainable forest management to climate change: Examples from Canada
  • David L. Peterson (U.S. Forest Service) – TBA
  • Mark Johnston (Saskatchewan Research Council) – TBA
  • Christopher Swanston (U.S. Forest Service) – Real-world forest adaptation: Moving from information to implementation
  • Linh Hoang and Barry Bollenbacher (U.S. Forest Service) –  Implementing climate change adaptation tactics in the Northern Rocky Mountains, USA

 Session Description: Over the last ten years, considerable progress has been made in the development of climate change adaptation approaches for forest management in the United States and Canada. Many of these adaptation approaches are broadly applicable to forest habitat restoration and conservation efforts. Given that development of climate change adaptation options are in the early stages, sharing of approaches across agency, organization, regional and national boundaries is critical to advance the science and application. This session will give examples of recent advances in adaptation planning in the U.S. and Canada through development of science-management partnerships. We will emphasize consistencies in theories, frameworks, and processes for adaptation, and highlight examples of development and implementation of adaptation options. We will conclude the session with an expert panel to discuss commonalities and differences among approaches, keys to success, and next steps to promote development and implementation of climate change adaptation strategies and tactics.

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Session Title: Effects of reclamation practices on ecosystem succession after oil-sands mining in boreal Alberta

Session Summary: This session will bring together a range of experts to discuss how environment and reclamation treatments influence succession and how reclamation practices might be modified to more effectively facilitate succession towards plant communities that resemble natural communities in the region.

Principal Organizers:

Phil Comeau, University of Alberta, phil.comeau@ualberta.ca

Amalesh Dhar, University of Alberta,  amalesh@ualberta.ca

Robert Vassov, Shell Canada Energy,  robert.vassov@shell.com

 Speakers:

  • Derek Mackenzie (University of Alberta) – Can reclamation of above and belowground processes be measured with a functional similarity index?
  • Dean MacKenzie (Vertex Resource Group) and Anne Naeth (University of Alberta) – Surface Soil Handling and Storage Impacts On Plant Propagules and Establishment of Native Plant Communities
  •  Simon Landhäusser, Ellen Macdonald and Vic Lieffers (University of Alberta) – Drivers of spatial and temporal patterns in vegetation during spontaneous early colonization of boreal reclamation sites
  • Brad Pinno and Sanatan Das Gupta (Natural Resources Canada) – Coarse woody debris applications in oil sands reclamation impact plant community and soil properties
  • Justine Karst (University of Alberta) – Establishment of ectomycorrhizal fungal communities following reclamation
  • Amalesh Dhar (University of Alberta) – Ecosystem assembly ideas and their application in oilsands reclamation

Session Description: An understanding of effects of reclamation treatments on vegetation response would assist in developing realistic indicators and targets for reclamation of upland oil-sands sites to forest ecosystems. This should include the effects of topography, subsoil and substrate, cover/donor soil, soil moisture regime, coarse woody material, surface characteristics, fertilization, agronomic cover crops, planting and seeding of native species, weeds, and other factors on plant community development including successional stages, rates of succession, development of communities and ecosystems that meet end targets (similar or close to composition, structure and productivity to natural boreal forest ecosystems).  This session will bring together a number of specialists to discuss how these factors and how various reclamation practices influence succession and achievement of reclamation targets.  The discussion will include consideration of current knowledge and information needs.

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Session Title: Assisted Migration in Practice: Ecological Risks and Benefits

Session Summary: This session will focus on assisted migration of tree species as a silvicultural tool, highlighting several case studies of implementation in operational settings, bookended with discussions of ecological rationale, benefits, and risks, and scientific support for proceeding with AM in forest management.

 Principal Organizers:

Brian Palik, USDA Forest Service, bpalik@fs.fed.us

Anthony D’Amato, University of Vermont, awdamato@uvm.edu

Speakers:

  • John Pedlar (Natural Resources Canada) – An Overview of Assisted Migration in Forestry
  • Anthony D’Amato (University of Vermont) – Black ash, emerald ash borer, and climate change: assisting the replacement of a foundational species
  • Brian Palik (USDA Forest Service) – Transitioning red pine forests to a warmer, drier future: assisting the replacement of an iconic forest type
  • Andreas Hamann (Univ. of Alberta) – Assisted migration in reforestation: risk of action versus risk of status quo management
  • Christian Messier (Université du Québec à Montréal): Realities and possibilities: what science tells us about the potential of assisted migration.

Session Description:  The use of assisted migration (including assisted range expansion) as forest management tools to facilitate climate change adaptation has been discussed with increasing frequency over the last 10 years.  There are three primary ways that researchers have addressed assisted migration in a forestry context.  First, there have been a number of review papers that discuss the topic, specifically, what it is in its various forms, what the advantages and pit-falls may be, and what rules should be followed for making decisions about appropriate species to move (e.g., Pedlar et al. BioScience 2012; Williams and Dumroese J of Forestry 2013).  Second, several projects have evaluated species choice, migration distances, and potential for regeneration success using various modeling frameworks (e.g., Gray et al. Ecol. Appl. 2011).  Third, there are an increasing number of evaluations of assisted migration using existing long-term provenance studies or that involve more recent transplant experiments using seedlings or seeds (e.g., McLane and Aitkin Ecol. Appl. 2012; AMAT).  These latter efforts are also largely provenance trials conducted in garden plot settings.  All of these are valuable for increasing our understanding of AM, but they lack the realism of actual AM trials that are conducted as part of silvicultural activities in managed forests.  In fact, there have been surprisingly few examples of AM implementation in operational settings, even in experimental settings, although there have been calls to begin this approach (e.g., Pedlar et al. BioScience 2012).  Some may argue that that lack of field evaluation is because it is still premature to be implementing AM at operational scales in managed forests due to uncertainties about appropriate species or seed-source choices, concerns over species invasion risk, and high financial risk associated with failure.  An alternative perspective is that the time to “experiment” with AM in an operational setting is now, given the looming threat of climate change-induced habitat shifts and barriers to natural migration of species.  This perspective suggests that even with uncertainty, the benefits may outweigh the risks.  This session will explore the use of AM in forestry, with a focus on examples of implementation in operational settings.  The session will open with an overview of AM in forest management, including the history of its use, its various forms, ecological implications, and benefits and risks.  The next three presentations will highlight AM case studies/ in operational settings.  While these talks will focus on AM trials that are conducted as research experiments, each is being done in conjunction with forest management stakeholders who are interested in jump starting AM in their forests by evaluating potential future-climate adapted species in actual management settings.  Each talk will present the rationale for the AM effort, the risks involved, and the ecological need and benefits of the AM effort.  Finally, the last talk of the session will address what recent research tells us about the potential for AM in managed forest at higher latitudes.  We believe that this session will be of great interests to NAFEW attendees and that a wrap-up discussion focusing on the ecological risks and benefits of AM in forestry will have the potential to engage much of the audience.

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Session Title: Beyond twitter and blogs: Connecting science to your core audience

 Session Summary: Science communication is increasingly of interest to academics, graduate students and resource managers and this session will shed light on new approaches for communicating and applying science, including tangible takeaways participants can incorporate into their own work.

 Principal Organizer:

Matthew Pyper, Fuse Consulting Ltd., matthew@fuseconsulting.ca

 Speakers:

  • Matthew Pyper (Fuse Consulting Ltd.) – Using drones and dialogue to inform new approaches to resource management
  • Kurt Illerbrun (Alberta Biodiversity Monitoring Institute) – Cultivating receptivity: Creating engagement through citizen science and outreach at the ABMI
  • Michel Proulx (University of Alberta) – Re-writing the way Universities share science with the public by shifting away from traditional approaches
  • Brian Palik (USDA Forest Service) and Anthony D’Amato (University of Vermont) – Operational-scale experiments: connecting scientists with managers using real world forestry

Session Description:

Blogging, twitter accounts and media profiles.  These are all tools and techniques which have been promoted for reaching the public with your science.  But to most scientists, these tools, and the time required to manage them, can seem overwhelming.  This raises a number of important questions.  Will these investments of time and energy pay off?  Are there alternate approaches to communicate science? And most importantly, how can we ensure that science is being applied to improve sustainability?

This session aims to highlight current initiatives in the realm of forest ecology that are finding creative ways to engage their target audiences in a genuine dialogue.  The session will cover a broad array of approaches ranging from: a dramatic shift in the way university media approaches communications; to engaging citizens in research; to using drones and multimedia to facilitate discussions about implementing science; to building capacity for uptake at the very start of a research program.  In addition to presentations, we will host an interactive panel session where presenters will highlight how you can use similar techniques in your own work.  The goal is to show managers and scientists that science communication isn’t just about blogs and social media.  Rather, it is about equipping people with the knowledge they need to make decisions that matter.