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Pilfering is thought to play a role in the evolution of scatter-hoarding strategies; but is not well understood in larder-hoarding animals. I studied intraspecific pilfering in red squirrels in Kluane, YT, Canada. The purpose of this project was to estimate the natural rate of cache pilferage, and to examine variation in pilfering behaviour. Results from experimental removal of territory owners, suggested that younger squirrels with smaller food caches were more likely to pilfer when given the opportunity. Survival over-winter was dependent on the number of cones cached and pilfering squirrels were less likely to survive. Using a mark-recapture study of marked cones I found that few individuals (14%) did any pilfering...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: M1-Mammals
This study describes Native community perceptions of the Hook Lake Wood Bison Recovery Project and options for its future management. In 1999, I conducted thirty in-depth, semi-structured interviews with residents in the community of Fort Resolution, NT including participant and non-participant observations. Resident perceptions about the recovery project and priorities for the future care of the bison appeared to be strongly influenced by their knowledge of the project, their views on proper relationships between humans and nature, and beliefs about the aetiology of disease in bison. Dissemination of knowledge from managers to residents is complicated by challenges of communication between project staff and residents...
Habitat quality is largely heterogeneous over space and time, although common simplifying assumptions in ecological research include homogeneity of areas occupied by a population and equal resource availability among individuals. These assumptions are made due to difficulties in quantifying the food available to individuals and following the effects of food on individual performance under natural conditions. My objectives were to document temporal and spatial variability in food availability, and its effects on seed predator individual performance and population dynamics in a white spruce-red squirrel system near Kluane Lake, Yukon. This system was ideal for my study because white spruce is the only conifer present,...
The Canadian North finds itself in a period of Canadian history with unprecedented levels of social and environmental complexity, political uncertainty and economic change. Within the Mackenzie River valley of the Northwest Territories, major industrial resource development projects are underway. At the same time, innovative natural resource management (NRM) governance institutions are being proposed. This dissertation explores how socio-cultural and political practices enable people to become institutional bricoleurs in resource management. From Déline, Northwest Territories, I examined how outside resource managers from federal and territorial governments, environmental non-government organizations, and aboriginal...
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This research focuses on contemporary and historical relationships between landscape change and human impacts in southwest Yukon, Canada, in order to bring to light the nature of cumulative social effects, and culturally appropriate methodologies that may be used for their evaluation. Results were acquired through twenty eight semi-structured interviews with natural resource managers, health and social workers, First Nations, and non-First Nations residents, in which resource development, and other important local markers of change were topics of discussion. Social thresholds are also developed from these results for their use in supporting resource management decisions. Resilience theory plays a center role in...
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Pilfering is thought to play a role in the evolution of scatter-hoarding strategies; but is not well understood in larder-hoarding animals. I studied intraspecific pilfering in red squirrels in Kluane, YT, Canada. The purpose of this project was to estimate the natural rate of cache pilferage, and to examine variation in pilfering behaviour. Results from experimental removal of territory owners, suggested that younger squirrels with smaller food caches were more likely to pilfer when given the opportunity. Survival over-winter was dependent on the number of cones cached and pilfering squirrels were less likely to survive. Using a mark-recapture study of marked cones I found that few individuals (14%) did any pilfering...
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This paper examines changes in climate with respect to permafrost and engineering design in Arctic regions. Current understanding of climate changes, predictive modeling, and climate data were studied. Inconsistencies and differences were noted, discussed, and evaluated using comparisons of the resulting climate data and graphs. A graphical analysis was done to compare different methods of data analysis and different visual interpretations of historical climate trends. The graphical analyses in this paper should be used as a guide for determining the accuracy of thermal design parameters applied to current project designs. The methodology used to evaluate raw data can greatly affect the output values used in design....
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Neotyphodium are fungal endosymbionts of grasses that reproduce asexually by infecting the host's seed. This relationship has traditionally been considered mutualistic, with the fungus improving host fitness by alleviating important stresses. To determine the importance of biotic and abiotic stresses in mediating the endophyte-grass interaction, I investigated the relationship between grazing pressure by collared pikas and Neotyphodium sp. infection frequency in the grass Festuca altaica in an alpine meadow. I conducted a factorial design experiment combining endophyte infection, grazing history, fungicide and fertilizer. Leaf demography and herbivory damage were monitored every two weeks. In areas with chronic...
The Lowermost Cretaceous within the Liard Basin of northeastern British Columbia has been the target of recent exploration activities. The Lower Cretaceous play has centered around the Maxhamish Lake area, where recoverable reserves are estimated at 400 Bcf. Core and outcrop descriptions have helped determine depositional environments for both the Chinkeh and lowermost member of the Scatter Formation, the Bulwell Member. Sedimentology, Ichnology and stratigraphic analysis has been used to reconstruct depositional environments, predict reservoir distributions, and determine stratigraphic relationships for the Lowermost Cretaceous of the Liard Basin. At Maxhamish Lake, the reservoir consists of amalgamated storm deposits...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Paleo and Holocene
The following is a qualitative and interpretive exploration of place identity, wilderness and cultural tourism interpreter guides, and sustainable tourism development in Canada's Yukon Territory. Four research sub-questions are used to glean insights and advance this study: (1) how are Yukon place identities characterized in relation to remoteness?; (2) how is Yukon tourism positioned in relation to these place identities of remoteness?; (3) how is remoteness reflected in the place identities of wilderness and cultural tourism interpreter guides?; and (4) how do the place identities of wilderness and cultural interpreter guides influence the way they design and deliver their tourism activities? Recognizing the importance...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: 1-Yukon
I examined the role of habitat quality and climate in the dynamics of occupancy and survival of a population of collared pikas in the Yukon Territory, Canada. Annual surveys of marked individuals over an 11 year period (1999 to 2009) within a geographically isolated metapopulation were used to analyze relationships between pika occupancy dynamics and habitat quality and between recruitment and survival and measures of climate based on Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO) and downscaled regional climate (Climate WNA). Occupancy dynamics were correlated with the quality of habitat within pika territories in terms of solar radiation and vegetation quality using Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) values derived...
Several new species of the ischnacanthiform acanthodian Ischnacanthus are described from a Lower Devonian (Lochkovian) fossil locality in the Mackenzie Mountains, Northwest Territories, Canada. These new species are distinguished based on features of the jaws, teeth, and tooth bearing bones. Ischnacanthus gracilis , a similar species from the Old Red Sandstone of Scotland, is not found at the Canadian fossil site. The presence of a range of sizes of specimens of Ischnacanthus suggests a growth series (juvenile to adult). The genus is found to develop in a largely isometric manner, with a few body proportions exhibiting slight allometry. Inability to diagnose species based on body fossils of Ischnacanthus implies...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation
The boundary between forest and tundra in mountainous areas, alpine treeline, is expected to advance as climate warming continues and change is likely to be pronounced in northern latitudes. I studied the white spruce ( Picea glauca (Moench) Voss) treeline in the Kluane region of southwest Yukon, Canada, with the objectives of: (i) characterizing its responses to past climate change, and (ii) assessing the influence of different environmental variables on spruce growth and treeline dynamics. Four investigations were conducted, each employing fundamentally different methodologies and occupying distinct levels within a hierarchical, scale-based, analytical framework. At the landscape scale, I mapped spruce distribution...
Dramatic climate changes and expansion of new biomes characterize the late Pleistocene - early Holocene of eastern Beringia. Analysis of plant macrofossils and pollen from three different sites in the Yukon Flats, central Alaska, record the past vegetation during the late Pleistocene - early Holocene (ca. 11,500-6,900 14 C yrs BP) transition. The first paper deals with plant macrofossils associated with one of the earliest post glacial beaver dams (ca. 9,300 14 C yrs BP) found in central Alaska. Vegetation reconstruction suggests a warmer than modern climate during the early Holocene. The second paper examines eight paleosols and their associated plant macrofossils and pollen within eolian deposits at two sites...
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This dissertation is an exploration of forests as understood and encountered from numerous perspectives in the Yukon Territory. Dealing primarily with non-indigenous Yukon residents who hunt, trap, work, recreate within, and aim to protect Yukon forests, it addresses the origins and implications of diverse forest perspectives in Canada's north. This work is based primarily off of anthropological fieldwork that took place in the Yukon Territory in 2009. Methods included archival research, interviews and participant observation. As a means of exploring the origin of forest perspectives, the author focuses on four key areas: Yukon forest history and contemporary forest views that invoke forest history, different experiences...
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The transition from forest to tundra, commonly called treeline, is expected to advance, particularly in northern latitudes. Treeline in two subarctic locales: the western Mackenzie Mountains, Northwest Territories, and the western Hudson Bay Lowlands southeast of Churchill, Manitoba were studied, with the objectives of determining: (i) the historical and current characteristics of the trees at altitudinal and latitudinal treelines, and; (ii) what factors contributed most to the configuration of treeline at its altitudinal and latitudinal limits. Five investigations were undertaken, each employing different methods in order to assess several variables, theorized to be key drivers of pattern and process at treeline....
Several new species of the ischnacanthiform acanthodian Ischnacanthus are described from a Lower Devonian (Lochkovian) fossil locality in the Mackenzie Mountains, Northwest Territories, Canada. These new species are distinguished based on features of the jaws, teeth, and tooth bearing bones. Ischnacanthus gracilis , a similar species from the Old Red Sandstone of Scotland, is not found at the Canadian fossil site. The presence of a range of sizes of specimens of Ischnacanthus suggests a growth series (juvenile to adult). The genus is found to develop in a largely isometric manner, with a few body proportions exhibiting slight allometry. Inability to diagnose species based on body fossils of Ischnacanthus implies...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation
The caribou (Rangifer tarandus ) has been the most valuable game species throughout circumpolar regions since ancient times. They have remained an important economic and cultural resource for northern communities. However, caribou are not always a dependable resource, due to marked population declines and range shifts that occur at unpredictable intervals. These fluctuations are often caused by harsh environmental conditions. In addition, since the early 19 th century, many caribou herds have experienced various levels of stress due to human encroachment on caribou ranges. Consequently, a number of populations and subspecies have recently been listed as threatened or endangered . As herd range conditions change...
This work is an attempt to understand and lessen the borders that exist between Indigenous knowledge and Eurocentric science. I contend that the two groups represent distinct cultures and that it is important to look at the differences and similarities that occur in language use as the two communicate on issues of mutual concern. I argue that discourse can shape knowledge in two very distinct ways within two different modes of thought; a narrative mode that is used primarily by the Aboriginal community and a scientific mode that is utilized primarily by the scientists. The research involves discourse analysis as a means of studying a unique opportunity to compare and contrast two cultures speaking on the topic of...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: A1-Native-Aboriginal Ways
With a warming climate, northern ecosystems will face significant ecological changes such as permafrost thaw, increased frequency of forest fires, and shifting ecosystem boundaries including the spread of canopy-forming shrubs into tundra communities. A growing number of observations show increases in canopy-forming shrubs at sites around the circumpolar Arctic, which could cause major modifications to the diversity and functioning of tundra ecosystems. In this study of changes in willow ( Salix spp.) cover and abundance in tundra ecosystems of the Yukon Territory, I found evidence that canopy-forming willow patches have expanded and canopy heights have increased on Herschel Island and that willows have advanced...


map background search result map search result map Fungal endophyte infection in an alpine meadow: Testing the mutualism theory Perceptions of change in southwest Yukon land and socialscapes: Implications for the study of cumulative effects and social thresholds Intraspecific cache pilferage by larder-hoarding red squirrels (Tamiasciurus hudsonicus) in Kluane, Yukon Dendrochronology and treeline dynamics within arctic and alpine localities in western and central Canada Shades of Green: The social nature of Yukon forests Intraspecific cache pilferage by larder-hoarding red squirrels (Tamiasciurus hudsonicus) in Kluane, Yukon Fungal endophyte infection in an alpine meadow: Testing the mutualism theory Perceptions of change in southwest Yukon land and socialscapes: Implications for the study of cumulative effects and social thresholds Dendrochronology and treeline dynamics within arctic and alpine localities in western and central Canada Shades of Green: The social nature of Yukon forests