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Taiga Shield Ecozone+ Evidence for Key Findings Summary

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Canadian Biodiversity: Ecosystem Status and Trends 2010

Evidence for Key Findings Summary Report No. 9
Published by the Canadian Councils of Resource Ministers

Document Information

Cover page

Library and Archives Canada Cataloguing in Publication

Taiga Shield Ecozone+ Evidence for Key Findings Summary.

Issued also in French under title:
Sommaire des éléments probants relativement aux constatations clés pour l'écozone+ de la Taïga du Bouclier.
Electronic monograph in PDF format.
Cat. no.: En14-43/0-9-2014E-PDF
ISBN 978-1-100-23547-9

Information contained in this publication or product may be reproduced, in part or in whole, and by any means, for personal or public non-commercial purposes, without charge or further permission, unless otherwise specified.
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Commercial reproduction and distribution is prohibited except with written permission from the author. For more information, please contact Environment Canada's Inquiry Centre at 1-800-668-6767 (in Canada only) or 819-997-2800.
Cover photos: Tree line, Singing Lake, NWT, © C. O'Brien; Lichen and shrub-covered palsas surrounded by a pond resulting from melting permafrost in a bog near the village of Radisson, QC, Serge Payette

This report should be cited as:
ESTR Secretariat. 2014. Taiga Shield ecozone+ evidence for key findings summary. Canadian Biodiversity: Ecosystem Status and Trends 2010, Evidence for Key Findings Summary Report No. 9. Canadian Councils of Resource Ministers. Ottawa, ON. vii + 80 p.

© Her Majesty the Queen in Right of Canada, 2014
Aussi disponible en français

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Preface

The Canadian Councils of Resource Ministers developed a Biodiversity Outcomes FrameworkFootnote 1 in 2006 to focus conservation and restoration actions under the Canadian Biodiversity Strategy.Footnote 2 Canadian Biodiversity: Ecosystem Status and Trends 2010Footnote 3 was the first report under this framework. It presents 22 key findings that emerged from synthesis and analysis of reports prepared as part of this project. These technical reports present status and trends information and analyses for many cross-cutting national themes (the Technical Thematic Report Series) and for Canada's terrestrial and marine ecozones+ (the Ecozone+ Status and Trends Assessments). More than 500 experts participated in data analysis, writing, and review of these foundation documents. Summary reports were also prepared for each terrestrial ecozone+ to present the ecozone+-specific evidence related to each of the 22 national key findings (the Evidence for Key Findings Summary Report Series). Together, the full complement of these products constitutes the 2010 Ecosystem Status and Trends Report (ESTR):

2010 Ecosystem Status and Trends Report (ESTR)
Report

This report, Taiga Shield Ecozone+ Evidence for Key Findings Summary, presents evidence related to the 22 national key findings and is therefore not a comprehensive assessment of all ecosystem-related information. The level of detail presented on each key finding varies and important issues or datasets may have been missed. As in all ESTR products, the time frames over which trends are assessed vary – both because time frames that are meaningful for these diverse aspects of ecosystems vary and because the assessment is based on the best available information, which is over a range of time periods.

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Ecological Classification System – Ecozones+

A slightly modified version of the Terrestrial Ecozones of Canada, described in the National Ecological Framework for Canada, Footnote 4 provided the ecosystem-based units for all reports related to this project. Modifications from the original framework include: adjustments to terrestrial boundaries to reflect improvements from ground-truthing exercises; the combination of three Arctic ecozones into one; the use of two ecoprovinces – Western Interior Basin and Newfoundland Boreal; the addition of nine marine ecosystem-based units; and, the addition of the Great Lakes as a unit. This modified classification system is referred to as "ecozones+" throughout these reports to avoid confusion with the more familiar "ecozones" of the original framework. Footnote 5 The northern boundary of the western section of the Taiga Shield ecozone was adjusted based on ground-truthing of the original boundaries.

Ecological Classification Framework for the Ecosystem Status and Trends Report for Canada.
map
Long Description for Ecozones+ map of Canada

This map of Canada shows the ecological classification framework for the Ecosystem Status and Trends Report, named "ecozones+". This map shows the distribution of 15 terrestrial ecozones+ (Atlantic Maritime; Newfoundland Boreal; Taiga Shield; Mixedwood Plains; Boreal Shield; Hudson Plains; Prairies; Boreal Plains; Montane Cordillera; Western Interior Basin; Pacific Maritime; Boreal Cordillera; Taiga Cordillera; Taiga Plains; Arctic), two large lake ecozones+ (Great Lakes; Lake Winnipeg), and nine marine ecozones+ (North Coast and Hecate Strait; West Coast Vancouver Island; Strait of Georgia; Gulf of Maine and Scotian Shelf; Estuary and Gulf of St. Lawrence; Newfoundland and Labrador Shelves; Hudson Bay, James Bay and Fox Basin; Canadian Arctic Archipelago; Beaufort Sea).

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Acknowledgements

This summary report is based on the draft Taiga Shield ecozone+ Status and Trends Assessment that was prepared by Anne Gunn and Joan Eamer. Additional reviews of this summary report were provided by scientists and resource managers from relevant provincial and federal government agencies, as well as two external expert reviewers. Further information about this ecozone+ can be found in the associated supplementary material for the Taiga Shield ecozone+.
Contributions to the draft Status and Trends Assessment are listed below.

Taiga Shield ecozone+ Draft Status and Trends Assessment acknowledgements

Lead authors:
A. Gunn and J. Eamer

Contributing authors:
D. Cantin and S. Carrière

Contributing authors, specific sections or topics
Aboriginal communities of the Taiga Shield: A. Penn
La Grande hydro complex, fish and mercury sections (Hydro-Québec): R. Verdon, R. Schetagne and R. Lussier

Authors of ESTR Thematic Technical Reports from which material is drawn
Large-scale climate oscillations influencing Canada, 1900-2008: B. Bonsal and A. Shabbar Footnote 6
Canadian climate trends, 1950-2007: X. Zhang, R. Brown, L. Vincent, W. Skinner, Y. Feng and E. MekisFootnote 7
Trends in large fires in Canada, 1959-2007: C.C. Krezek-Hanes, F. Ahern, A. Cantin and M.D. FlanniganFootnote 8
Wildlife pathogens and diseases in Canada: F.A. LeightonFootnote 9
Trends in breeding waterfowl in Canada: M. Fast, B. Collins and M. Gendron Footnote 10
Trends in permafrost conditions and ecology in northern Canada: S. SmithFootnote 11
Northern caribou population trends in Canada: A. Gunn, D. Russell and J. EamerFootnote 12
Woodland caribou, boreal population, trends in Canada: C. Callaghan, S. Virc and J. DuffeFootnote 13
Landbird trends in Canada, 1968-2006: C. Downes, P. Blancher and B. CollinsFootnote 14
Trends in Canadian shorebirds: C. Gratto-Trevor, R.I.G. Morrison, B. Collins, J. Rausch and V. JohnstonFootnote 15
Monitoring ecosystems remotely: a selection of trends measured from satellite observations of Canada: F. Ahern, J. Frisk,R. Latifovic and D. PouliotFootnote16
Biodiversity in Canadian lakes and rivers: W.A. Monk and D.J. BairdFootnote 17

Review
conducted by scientists and renewable resource and wildlife managers from relevant territorial and federal government agencies through a review process recommended by the ESTR Steering Committee. Additional reviews of specific sections were conducted by university researchers in their field of expertise at the request of the authors.

Direction
provided by the ESTR Steering Committee composed of representatives of federal, provincial and territorial agencies.

Editing, synthesis, technical contributions, maps and graphics, and report production
by the ESTR Secretariat.

Aboriginal Traditional Knowledge
compiled from publicly available sources by D.D. Hurlburt.

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Figure 1: Overview map of the Taiga Shield Ecozone+
map
Long description for Figure 1

This map of the Taiga Shield ecozone+ shows the locations of cities/towns and bodies of water which are referred to within the report. The ecozone+ is divided into eastern and western sections by Hudson Bay. In the west, it covers most of the the eastern part of the Northwest Territories and extends across the top of Saskatchewan into the northern part of Manitoba and southern part of Nunavut. To the east of Hudson Bay, the ecozone+ extends from James Bay across Northern Quebec and Labrador to the Labrador Sea. Cities/towns shown on the map include Wekweti ,Yellowknife and Fort Smith (on the edge of the ecozone+)in the Northwest Territories, Uranium City in Saskatchewan, Shefferville in Quebec, and Labrador City on the southern edge of the ecozone+ in Labrador. Sanikiluaq on the Belcher Islands in Hudson Bay is shown, but does not fall within the ecozone. Half of Great Slave Lake falls within the western Taiga Shield and is pictured on the left side of the map, and the La Grande River is labelled in Quebec.

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Footnotes

Footnote 1

Environment Canada. 2006. Biodiversity outcomes framework for Canada. Canadian Councils of Resource Ministers. Ottawa, ON. 8 p.

Return to footnote 1

Footnote 2

Federal-Provincial-Territorial Biodiversity Working Group. 1995. Canadian biodiversity strategy: Canada's response to the Convention on Biological Diversity. Environment Canada, Biodiversity Convention Office. Ottawa, ON. 86 p.

Return to footnote 2

Footnote 3

Federal, Provincial and Territorial Governments of Canada. 2010. Canadian biodiversity: ecosystem status and trends 2010. Canadian Councils of Resource Ministers. Ottawa, ON. vi + 142 p.

Return to footnote 3

Footnote 4

Ecological Stratification Working Group. 1995. A national ecological framework for Canada. Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Research Branch, Centre for Land and Biological Resources Research and Environment Canada, State of the Environment Directorate, Ecozone Analysis Branch. Ottawa, ON/Hull, QC. vii + 125 p.

Return to footnote 4

Footnote 5

Rankin, R., Austin, M. and Rice, J. 2011. Ecological classification system for the ecosystem status and trends report. Canadian Biodiversity: Ecosystem Status and Trends 2010, Technical Thematic Report No. 1. Canadian Councils of Resource Ministers. Ottawa, ON. ii + 14 p.

Return to footnote 5

Footnote 6

Bonsal, B. and Shabbar, A. 2011. Large-scale climate oscillations influencing Canada, 1900-2008. Canadian Biodiversity: Ecosystem Status and Trends 2010, Technical Thematic Report No. 4. Canadian Councils of Resource Ministers. Ottawa, ON. iii + 15 p.

Return to footnote 6

Footnote 7

Zhang, X., Brown, R., Vincent, L., Skinner, W., Feng, Y. and Mekis, E. 2011. Canadian climate trends, 1950-2007. Canadian Biodiversity: Ecosystem Status and Trends 2010, Technical Thematic Report No. 5. Canadian Councils of Resource Ministers. Ottawa, ON. iv + 21 p.

Return to footnote 7

Footnote 8

Krezek-Hanes, C.C., Ahern, F., Cantin, A. and Flannigan, M.D. 2011. Trends in large fires in Canada, 1959-2007. Canadian Biodiversity: Ecosystem Status and Trends 2010, Technical Thematic Report No. 6. Canadian Councils of Resource Ministers. Ottawa, ON. v + 48 p.

Return to footnote 8

Footnote 9

Leighton, F.A. 2011. Wildlife pathogens and diseases in Canada. Canadian Biodiversity: Ecosystem Status and Trends 2010, Technical Thematic Report No. 7. Canadian Councils of Resource Ministers. Ottawa, ON. iv + 53 p.

Return to footnote 9

Footnote 10

Fast, M., Collins, B. and Gendron, M. 2011. Trends in breeding waterfowl in Canada. Canadian Biodiversity: Ecosystem Status and Trends 2010, Technical Thematic Report No. 8. Canadian Councils of Resource Ministers. Ottawa, ON. v + 37 p.

Return to footnote 10

Footnote 11

Smith, S. 2011. Trends in permafrost conditions and ecology in Northern Canada. Canadian Biodiversity: Ecosystem Status and Trends 2010, Technical Thematic Report No. 9. Canadian Councils of Resource Ministers. Ottawa, ON. iii + 22 p.

Return to footnote 11

Footnote 12

Gunn, A., Russell, D. and Eamer, J. 2011. Northern caribou population trends in Canada. Canadian Biodiversity: Ecosystem Status and Trends 2010, Technical Thematic Report No. 10. Canadian Councils of Resource Ministers. Ottawa, ON. iv + 71 p.

Return to footnote 12

Footnote 13

Callaghan, C., Virc, S. and Duffe, J. 2011. Woodland caribou, boreal population, trends in Canada. Canadian Biodiversity: Ecosystem Status and Trends 2010, Technical Thematic Report No. 11. Canadian Councils of Resource Ministers. Ottawa, ON. iv + 36 p.

Return to footnote 13

Footnote 14

Downes, C., Blancher, P. and Collins, B. 2011. Landbird trends in Canada, 1968-2006. Canadian Biodiversity: Ecosystem Status and Trends 2010, Technical Thematic Report No. 12. Canadian Councils of Resource Ministers. Ottawa, ON. x + 94 p.

Return to footnote 14

Footnote 15

Gratto-Trevor, C., Morrison, R.I.G., Collins, B., Rausch, J. and Johnston, V. 2011. DO NOT USE - USE 70039 Trends in Canadian shorebirds. Canadian Biodiversity: Ecosystem Status and Trends 2010, Technical Thematic Report No. 13. Canadian Councils of Resource Ministers. Ottawa, ON. iv + 32 p.

Return to footnote 15

Footnote 16

Ahern, F., Frisk, J., Latifovic, R. and Pouliot, D. 2011. Monitoring ecosystems remotely: a selection of trends measured from satellite observations of Canada. Canadian Biodiversity: Ecosystem Status and Trends 2010, Technical Thematic Report No. 17. Canadian Councils of Resource Ministers. Ottawa, ON.

Return to footnote 16

Footnote 17

Monk, W.A. and Baird, D.J. 2011. Biodiversity in Canadian lakes and rivers. Canadian Biodiversity: Ecosystem Status and Trends 2010, Technical Thematic Report No. 19. Canadian Councils of Resource Ministers. Ottawa, ON. Draft report.

Return to footnote 17

Introduction