NAFEW 2017

The 11th North American Forest Ecology Workshop (NAFEW) was held in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada June 19 – 22, 2017. NAFEW 2017 was hosted by the University of Alberta. The theme of NAFEW 2017 will be: Sustaining Forests from Restoration to Conservation.

The conference organizing team was: Ellen Macdonald, Simon Landhausser, Phil Comeau, Barb Thomas, Scott Nielsen, and Erin Bayne (Univ.  of Alberta), Anne McIntosh (U of Alberta Augustana), John Stadt (Alberta Agriculture and Forestry), and Deborah Brenton and Brad Pinno (Canadian Forest Service).  Sharon Katzeff (Univ. of Alberta) is assisting with arrangements.


The detailed conference program is available here: NAFEW Program Book – FINAL VERSION.

Abstracts for all talks and posters (alphabetical by surname of lead author):  NAFEW Abstracts

A copy of the “Program at a Glance”  indicating times and locations of sessions, keynote talks, and other events is available here.

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


NAFEW 2017 In-Conference Field Trips

The following in-conference tours are available.  Your tour selection is shown on the ticket in your registration package. 

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).

We gratefully acknowledge support from:
friaacanada-2c-nrcan-cfs-curvesUA-RR-COLOURUA-ALES-COLOURUA-SCI-COLOURSAF logo      SyncrudeLogo_RGB         fuse-logo-RGB         regent