The fall of 2017 marks the end of whitebark pine planting season in Jasper National Park and Mount Robson Provincial Park as part of an effort to recover the species. Knocked down by blister rust, fire, mountain pine beetle, climate change, and other threats, whitebark pine is an endangered species protected under the Federal Species At Risk Act (SARA).
Since January 2015, the Trans Mountain Legacy Fund has supported initiatives to recover whitebark pine in both parks through cone collection, spreading seed, growing saplings in nurseries and planting new whitebark pine. It’s our hope that in supporting this science-based initiative, whitebark pine continues to be a part of these subalpine ecosystems.
Fish passage restored at Mile 9 culvert in Jasper National Park
Read about it and see the before and after photos in our news section here.
TMLF partners with Canadian National Railway to restore rainbow trout habitat in Mount Robson Provincial Park
Read about it and see photos here
2011 saw the completion of data gathering and analysis for two technical reports:
Transportation corridors in Jasper National Park and Mount Robson Provincial Park have a role in shaping large carnivore movements. While wolves, bears, cougars, lynx and coyotes are not deterred by the physical structure(s) of the transportation corridor (indeed some are attracted by it), it is dangerous habitat for them and road mortality can have serious consequences for long-term population persistence. However, actual effects depend on species resilience, population size, behaviour and movement. Based on information in the Clevenger report and discussions with local biologists, the TMLF Steering Committee decided that the extent to which these mortalities affect carnivore populations warranted further investigation.
A team from the Western Transportation Institute (WTI) led by Dr. Marcel Huijser was hired to evaluate the relationship between the transportation corridors (highway and railroad) and carnivore movements and mortality in Jasper National Park and Mount Robson Provincial Park. Their report included the following:
Recommendations for data collection were provided in the report. If implemented by resource managers, such data would feed into a long-term effort to understand whether or not transportation corridor mortality is affecting the population health of various carnivores. Although the results of the PVA were limited due to lack of data currently available, the exercise served to show the usefulness of PVA as a tool once sufficient and appropriate data have been collected.
Aquatic connectivity is the degree to which water bodies in an area flow together naturally in spite of human created barriers such as roads and dams. Connectivity is important for the network of streams, rivers and lakes in the upper Athabasca and Fraser River drainages. Specific areas within this network provide critically important habitat for fish and wildlife species or life stages, and isolated connectivity barriers that prevent fish from reaching these areas can have substantial, unintended effects on bull trout and other aquatic species. Poorly designed, constructed, or damaged culverts are the primary source of movement barriers in this region.
Triton Environmental Consultants were hired to assess the status of aquatic connectivity along transportation corridors (railroad and highway) in Jasper National Park and Mount Robson Provincial Park. Specifically, they
The consultants used multiple criteria to rank sites along the corridors and identify locations where mitigation and restoration work would be most beneficial and feasible. They identified 11 project opportunities for restoring aquatic connectivity within Mount Robson Provincial Park and Jasper National Park. Their recommendations include options ranging from deactivation of crossings, modifying existing culvert(s), to replacing culverts with bridges and rehabilitating riparian habitat around crossings.
 Huijser, M.P., Begley, J.S. and E.A. van der Grift. 2012. Mortality and Live Observations of Wildlife on and Along the Yellowhead Highway and the Railroad through Jasper National Park and Mount Robson Provincial Park, Canada. 365 pp.