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Abstract Detail

Economic Botany: Applied Plant Biology

Keefer, Michael E. [1], Munro, Robin [2], Cocksedge, Wendy [3], Meuleman, Jason [4], MacPherson, Nancy [5].

What about the berries? The development of management recommendations for important native shrubs in BC.

British Columbia has a large diversity of edible berry species, many of which are important to wildlife, First Nations and recreational harvesters, with some being commercially valuable. Many of these species were actively and passively managed by First Nations for millennia. Despite the importance to wildlife and people, there is a scarcity of literature to be found on how to manage for these species. In the interest of developing such guidelines, Siska Traditions Society, the BC Ministry of Forests and Range Research Branch and others are collaborating on two projects, ‘Measuring Success in Managing for Saskatoon berries and other NTFPs’ and ‘Synthesis of Knowledge and Development of Huckleberry Management Recommendations in B.C.’. The former project, also includes an experiment focussed on the management of Saskatoon bushes that incorporates traditional knowledge and disturbance ecology, testing burning, pruning, and control treatments. In its first year the site of the experiment (located in the Fraser River Canyon near Lytton, B.C.) was timber cruised, fuels and fire history assessed, oral history interviews completed, and the relevant literature reviewed. Results to date show good agreement between field and oral data sources on the stand structure and fire history, and have provided a modern context for a number of Nlaka’pamux terms that refer to plant management. Data from these projects are being assembled into a consistent searchable format that includes fields such as aboriginal uses, commercial values, habitat relationships, and management considerations such as response to fire, palatability to wildlife, susceptibility to disease, competition, etc. As part of these project, guidelines were written for the maintenance and enhancement of Saskatoon (Amelanchier alnifolia), blackcap (Rubus leucodermis), beaked hazelnut (Corylus cornuta), and black huckleberry (Vaccinium membranaceum). The information being compiled is targeted to resource managers, including First Nations, foresters, agrologists, horticulturalists, and biologists.

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1 - Keefer Ecological Services, 3816 Highland Rd., Cranbrook, BC, V1C 6X7, Canada
2 - consultant, 4066 Cavallin Court, Victoria, BC, V8N 5P9, Canada
3 - Royal Roads University, Centre For Non-Timber Resources, 2005Sooke Rd., Victoria, BC, V9B 5Y2, Canada
4 - Tipi Mountain Native Plants, 3816 Highland Rd., Cranbrook, BC, V1C 6X7, Canada
5 - University of British Columbia, Faculty of Land and Food Systems, 2357 Main Mall, Vancouver, BC, V6T 1Z4, Canada

First Nations
fire ecology
Restoration Ecology

Presentation Type: Oral Paper:Papers for Topics
Session: 59
Location: 157/Law
Date: Wednesday, July 30th, 2008
Time: 11:15 AM
Number: 59005
Abstract ID:744

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