Monica Lamb-Yorski photo Forest Practices Board chair Kevin Kriese was in the Cariboo this week to attend the Federation of B.C. Woodlot Associations AGM and meet with local mayors, Ministry of Forests and other stakeholders.

environment

Logging beetle-killed wood bad for small, at risk fisher: B.C. forest board

FPB chair Kevin Kriese said a special investigation was launched after two trappers filed a complaint

A special investigation by the Forest Practices Board has found logging destroyed a special, at risk animal’s habitat in the Nazko area.

Kevin Kriese, FPB chair, told the Tribune the investigation was launched after two trappers lodged a complaint that logging had eliminated or destroyed their trapping areas between 2002 and 2017.

The animal at risk is the fisher, a close relative of the martin but twice as large who lives in large trees.

“We found that they had not fully cared for fisher habitat, both the government and the companies,” Kriese said. “The companies did some things, but what would happen is one company would leave behind fisher habitat but then someone else would come in and log that fisher habitat.”

Because there were many different licencees doing salvage logging in an uncoordinated way, they could not verify something had been left behind at the end of the day, he added.

“It may actually get harvested by these other licencees because they don’t know it was left behind.”

A fisher sitting in a forested area (Pixabay)

Kriese said the government moving forward is going to have to insist that salvage operations involve plans on what is going to be harvested and what is going to be left.

Fishers live in older forest stands with lots of large trees, snags and coarse woody debris. Fishers prefer landscapes with large areas of connected forest and avoid non-forested openings. Areas of mostly-dead timber may still provide habitat for fishers.

The same thing applies to wildfires, he added.

“There is work to do that pre-planning around the salvage of the fires, but that pre-planning did not happen with the mountain pine beetle harvesting. There is not enough habitat out there to sustain fisher in those trap lines going into the future.”

Better planning at the landscape level is necessary, he added.

“The same thing can be said around moose and the challenges we’ve had. The challenge with a lot of our issues is whether it’s to stop logging or do more logging and in the middle is trying to find solutions that allow better logging to deliver both the values on the landscape and keep timber supply, which is important to communities.”

Logging can continue, but it needs to be planned better, he added.

“If they planned their harvest and leave areas, and there was better access management and screening, simple tools like that would improve the moose habitat.”

Kriese is in the Cariboo to attend the Federation of B.C. Woodlot Associations annual general meeting taking place in Williams Lake Friday, and to meet with staff from the ministry of forests, and the Williams Lake and Quesnel mayors.

Read more: Woodlot associations AGM to tackle wildfire impacts, prevention and risk reduction

Prior to becoming FPB chair in August, Kriese was the assistant deputy minister of the Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations.

“The Forest Practices Board is the only independent board of its type in Canada,” he said of his reason for wanting to become the chair. “It has a stellar reputation for doing good work and I admired their work for ages and thought if I ever had a chance to work with them I would.”

In September, the FPB announced plans to audit the Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development’s small-scale salvage program and salvage licence holders in the Cariboo-Chilcotin Natural Resource District.

That audit is underway to examine whether harvesting, roads, silviculture, fire protection and associated planning, carried out between Sept. 1, 2017, and Sept. 28, 2018, met the requirements of the Forest and Range Practices Act and the Wildfire Act.

Small-scale salvage is the recovery of trees that are wind-thrown, beetle-killed, damaged by fire or considered to be residue. Licence volumes must be 2,000 cubic metres or less.

In the past year, most salvage activities in the district took place near Williams Lake, Horsefly and McLeese Lake.

“Every year we do about eight audits that are randomly selected and this year it landed on this region. Our staff go out on the ground and actually look at what’s happening with road building and silviculture and the records of planning and what happens with true on the ground forest practices and see whether or not they are following both the regulations and professional standards,” Kriese said, noting they have about 20 staff members comprised of engineers, biologists and foresters.

Special investigation into the ministry of forests compliance and

enforcement function

Kriese said a report will come out by Christmas with the findings from a special investigation into the compliance and enforcement function of the ministry of forests.

“We will look at whether or not the compliance and enforcement function is doing what the public expects. Is it set up properly? Is it delivering? What kind of results does it achieve? How does it measure its results?”



news@wltribune.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Retailers feel impact of generous return policies

Technology data tracking can clamp down on fraudulent abuse

Several thefts reported to the Revelstoke RCMP today

All took place between 4th St. and 8th St. East of Mackenzie Ave.

Revelstoke Skating Club hosts Christmas performance

The Revelstoke Skating Club hosted their annual Christmas performance last Thursday evening.… Continue reading

Two shutouts for the Grizzlies over the weekend

The Revelstoke Grizzlies played two home games last weekend against the Chase… Continue reading

Powder report: Rain in valley, snow on the ski hills

Get your ski gear ready as area mountains are ready for you to enjoy all the Interior winter has to offer this season.

Story of the Year: Deadly Humboldt Broncos bus crash

The Canadian Press annual survey of newsrooms across the country saw 53 out of 129 editors cast their votes for the Humboldt Broncos bus crash.

Police have ‘viable suspects’ in B.C. gangster’s 2017 murder

Crown prosecutor Neil Wiberg was successful in asking a judge to extend the length of time police can hold onto exhibits seized in connection with the homicide.

Man rescued from sinking boat off the coast of Vancouver Island

Mayday call came into Coast Guard saying vessel had taken on water, BC Ferries dispatched to scene

Four per cent of Canadian women report being sexually harassed in the workplace

One per cent of men report being sexually harassed in the workplace

Stricter drunk driving laws to take effect across Canada today

It gives police officers the right to ask for a breath sample from any driver they lawfully stop

Story of the Year: Deadly Humboldt Broncos bus crash

The Canadian Press annual survey of newsrooms across the country saw 53 out of 129 editors cast their votes for the Humboldt Broncos bus crash.

Winter storm warning issued for Coquihalla highway

Total snow accumulations of 40-50 cm expected by Wednesday

The prize was wrong: Man turns down trip to Manitoba

A New Hampshire man won the prize on “The Price is Right”, but turned it down because the taxes were too high

Sarah MacDougall talks emulating the vastness of nature in latest album

The Swedish musician will perform in Kelowna Jan. 30

Most Read