Canadian Forest Service Publications

Distribution of arboreal lichens in a dry Douglas-fir forest of southern British Columbia. 2011. A. Arsenault; C. Björk; T. Goward. Abstract. Page 121 in Anonymous. Proceedings of Plant Canada 2011: Plant Adaptation to Environmental Change. Joint meeting of the Canadian Society of Agronomy, Canadian Society of Horticultural Science, Canadian Society of Plant Physiologists, Canadian Botanical Association, Canadian Phytopathological Society, and Canadian Wee Science Society. 17-21 July 2011, Halifax, NS.

Year: 2011

Issued by: Atlantic Forestry Centre

Catalog ID: 33338

Language: English

Availability: Not available through the CFS (click for more information).

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The Opax Mountain Silviculture Systems Project is located in the Interior Douglas-fir biogeoclimatic zone, approximately 30 km north of Kamloops, BC. It is divided into six treatment units replicated twice at 2 different elevations. The units represent varying amounts and patterns of tree harvesting, including uncut controls, 20% removal of merchantable volume using individual tree selection (ITS), 50% ITS, 50% ITS with uncut reserves, 20% removal using a mixture of patch cuts of 0.1, 0.4 and 1.6 hectares, and 50% removal with patch cuts of a similar nature as the 20% removal. Logging took place in the winter of 1993-1994. Patch cuts were subsequently planted with saplings of Douglas fir, lodgepole pine and ponderosa pine. The distribution of the arboreal lichen flora was examined in each experimental unit in the fall of 2007. The flora is surprisingly rich with over 300 species within a 400 hectare area. The crust lichens constitute 58% of the species, while 30% are macrolichens, and 11% are calicioids. Species diversity did not seem to be closely associated with treatment type. However trees in the unlogged perimeter of the patch-cuts had much greater richness, 196 species, compared to 57 and 18 for epiphytes growing on advanced regeneration and planted trees inside patch-cuts. Mean species richness followed the same pattern for macrolichens and crusts increasing with increasing substrate age. Calicioid lichens were only found in unlogged perimeters of patch-cuts. This study reveals for the first time that Interior Douglas–fir forests have a highly rich and diverse arboreal lichen flora. These findings have important implications for retention of key lichen habitats in managed landscapes and should help foresters and planners minimize impact on biodiversity resulting from harvesting, silviculture, biofuel and ecosystem restoration activities.