Erin Bayne, University of Alberta
Energy sector development in the western boreal forest has generated concerns about the environmental impacts of linear features. These concerns have led to proposals that linear feature density thresholds should be implemented to minimize impacts on wildlife. A key uncertainty is which types of linear features should be counted when estimating if a threshold has been surpassed. Major questions are whether narrow seismic lines and seismic lines with vegetation regrowth should be included when estimating thresholds. We conducted a series of surveys to evaluate wildlife responses to different types of seismic lines in bogs, conifer, dominated, mixedwood and deciduous forests in the western boreal forest. Research was focused on passerine birds and medium to large size mammals.