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Shoreline
Newsletter

"There's a lot more resting on your shoulders than just a canoe."
Hi there Quetico fan! It is summer! The call of the wild and the song of the loon resounds along pine strewn lakes, moose munch on lilypads along shores, bats flicker, songbirds sing, bass and sunfish float and loaf under the shade of the edge of the forest, chipmunks scurry and make berry and seed caches and bald eagles enjoy the pike and soar in the skies through what had been a damp spring and is now hot mid summer in July.

In this 65th anniversary July issue of the Shoreline Newsletter, discover how Quetico Foundation's biology interns are working this summer as Assistant Park Biologists in Quetico Provincial Park and are up to quite a lot - including; bat, songbird, fish, wetland, red pine and historic forest fire research and helping to restore habitat and plant trees.    

Sunfish Monitoring in Quetico!


Quetico Provincial Park is nearby the northern range of four species of sunfish – the pumpkinseed, green sunfish, bluegill and the northern sunfish. The northern sunfish has recently been assessed under both federal and provincial legislation to be a Species At Risk of Special Concern in the Great Lakes watershed and in Quetico. Cat and Jared, Quetico Foundation biology intersn - Assistant Park Biologists have been assisting in identifying the distribution of sunfish species in Quetico. Learn more about studying Quetico's sunfish: https://queticofoundation.org/sunfish-monitoring.

Songbird and Wetland Bird Monitoring


This year the Quetico Foundation Biology Interns - Quetico Provincial Park Assistant Biologists, Jared Stachiw and Cat Langille, monitored forest songbirds and collected recording data. Songbirds are often known for their beautiful songs, brilliant colours, and being a welcome sight in parks, at bird feeders, and in the wild. These birds aren’t only beautiful, their songs are also a convenient indicator of the health of the surrounding forest. Monitoring the richness and diversity of songbird species, and their changes through time, is useful for assessing the ecological condition, or health, of an area. The monitoring of songbirds within Quetico Provincial Park is a long-term study that began in 2014, with the collected data being used to assess the health of Quetico’s forests and songbird communities.

Across Canada many wetlands are being lost due to human activity, such as development and pollution, especially in the densely populated Great Lakes basin. 2019 marks the inaugural year for marsh monitoring, using marsh birds as a surrogate for marsh health, in Quetico Provincial Park. The presence of particular species of marsh birds, such as the least bittern, sora, and pied-billed grebe provide an important indicator of marsh health. Jared and Cat are carrying out canoe surveys of the Pickerel River marsh to track which species are found in this wetland area. These surveys will occur three times this summer to gain an understanding of the health of this wetland.


Read the update here: https://queticofoundation.org/songbird-and-wetland-bird-monitoring-2019

Canada Day, Tree Planting and Habitat Restoration


In June, Quetico Foundation biology interns and Quetico Provincial Park Assistant Biologists, Jared Stachiw and Cat Langille, transplanted a variety of trees to replace white pine that succumbed to white pine blister rust within the Dawson Trail campground. When there is greater biodiversity in an area it results in greater ecological resilience. This means that if there is a greater number of tree species there is a greater chance of the treed area remaining intact even if a disease occurs in the stand. With this in mind, Quetico’s Assistant Biologists planted a plethora of tree species, including red maple, mountain ash, and red pine, in the previously white pine dominated area.

And on Canada Day, Atikokan's celebrations were well attended, with more than 20 canoes in the annual Canada Day Canoe Parade. Quetico Foundation Biology Intern-Quetico Provincial Park Assistant Biologist, Jared Stachiw, and Quetico Provincial Park Portage Crew members ‘swept’ the Atikokan River at the end of the procession, ensuring all paddlers made it to the landing safely. Atikokan celebrated Canada’s birthday in style with municipal speeches, performances by local artists and plenty of free food!

2019 Quetico Bat Surveys!


Did you know that 5 species of bats have been observed in Quetico Provincial Park? Eastern red bats, hoary bats, silver-haired bats, big brown bats and little brown myotis bats: https://queticofoundation.org/bat-surveys-2019 .Bat surveys will be done three times this summer with an ultra high frequency microphone that picks up bats ultrasonic calls. The survey crew, composed of Cat Langille and Jared Stachiw, canoe from The Pines on Pickerel Lake to the north shore of French Lake just after sunset, slowly following the shoreline to pick up bat calls while they do their evening hunting. Computer software is used to identify the number and species of bats detected or “heard” along the route based on collected audio information. These surveys are important for determining the abundance of Species At Risk bats, as well as determining the distribution of all bat species in Quetico Provincial Park.

Red Pine Forest Fire Frequency Research

The Quetico Provincial Park biology team contributed field research toward a project that develops understanding of the frequency of surface fires in red pine stands in the park. Surface fires are low intensity fires that burn surface litter and undergrowth but typically don’t kill red or white pine trees, especially if they are mature. These fires are important in allowing the regeneration of red and white pine. For more information on our Research and Publications including reports on forest fire and biology research please visit Quetico Foundation's website at https://queticofoundation.org/research-and-publications/
Save the Date for the evening of October 30 2019!
The Quetico Foundation Dinner is BACK. The dinner will be held at the University Club of Toronto. An exciting speaker has been booked and will be announced shortly. For more information email margaretcasey49@outlook.com. 
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Photos © Jared Walter Stachiw, photo of Jared and Cat planting a red pine by Michael Davidson, big brown bat photo by Angell Williams, photo of Jared and Cat canoeing to a research site by Jill Legault, Quetico rainbow by Mediachef