Identification of restoration needs and opportunities for wetland and forest ecosystems in a municipal park

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Audrey Paquette, Stéphanie Pellerin, Monique Poulin

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Urban wetlands face a variety of pressures such as housing, agriculture, and forestry. The “Base de plein air de Sainte-Foy” (BPASF) in Québec is a municipal outdoor recreational center comprising a variety of environment types, including wetlands and forests. This project aims to study the historical and present state of the environments at the BPASF to identify restoration and conservation opportunities. The impacts of anthropic disturbance interventions were evaluated through the analysis of historical aerial photographs. To assess the state of the environments and their restoration potential, a floristic survey was performed in 76 plots of 400 m2 in 2019. Preliminary results show that plots located in the forest and swamp areas have the highest species richness, whereas only plots located in the marsh and peatland areas significantly contribute to beta diversity. This points out to the importance of preserving these four types of environment to maintain biodiversity at the BPASF. In further analyses, we will identify indicator species and measure the impact of environmental characteristics on species richness and distribution for each environment type. An index of biological integrity will be developed and used to identify areas in need of intervention or restoration. The knowledge acquired will then be used to write a restoration and management plan for the city of Quebec. The plan will take into account the demand for ecological services. Lessons learned from this project will serve other municipalities trying to implement a restoration and management plan in an urban natural area.

Resource Type:
Conference Presentation, SER2021

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