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TitleMonitoring habitat condition changes during winter and pre-calving migration for Bathurst Caribou in northern Canada
AuthorChen, WORCID logo; Russell, D E; Gunn, A; Croft, B; Chen, W R; Fernandes, RORCID logo; Zhao, H; Li, J; Zhang, YORCID logo; Koehler, K; Olthof, I; Fraser, R HORCID logo; Leblanc, S GORCID logo; Henry, G R; White, R G; Finstad, G L
Sourcevol. 14, no. 1, 2013 p. 36-44,
Alt SeriesNatural Resources Canada, Contribution Series 20181589
PublisherInforma UK Limited
Mediapaper; on-line; digital
File formatpdf
Subjectsgeophysics; remote sensing
ProgramClimate Change Geoscience
Released2013 03 01
AbstractMany factors influence the abundance of migratory tundra caribou (Rangifer tarandus). To understand their interactions with caribou abundance, we need to quantify these factors. In this study, we documented the changes in habitat conditions during winter and pre-calving migration for the Bathurst Caribou herd, using remote sensing data and ground measurements. We found there was a significant decrease in forest area which has abundant lichen, the main caribou winter diet, during recent decades due to increase in burned area, which in turn was positively correlated with summer temperature. For winter forage accessibility, we examined the annual maximum snow depth and mean ice content in snow (ICIS). There was a significant increase in ICIS during 1963-2006, but no trend in the maximum snow depth. During the pre-calving migration, the percent snow cover showed large inter-annual variations but no significant trend.

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