Land Use Change

There is much interest in the Crown by science and environmental enthusiasts as it is a largely intact ecosystem. The health of the wildlife populations that exist in the Crown is dependent on maintaining a landscape that allows wildlife species to move freely with minimum mortality from human related factors. In some cases connectivity for wildlife movement has been compromised. Continued loss of connectivity will result in insular populations that are at higher risk to mortality and further decline.

Human modification to the landscape is a key stressor impacting overall landscape connectivity in the Crown. The CMP has developed a preliminary assessment of human modification as a tool for understanding and mapping both the intensity and change in anthropogenic footprint over time. The CMP currently is using the analysis to inform identification of priority areas for management action aimed a decreasing landscape fragmentation and enhancing connectivity.

To read more on the Human Modification Index in the Crown click here.

To view a poster detailing the preliminary results of the Human Modification Index click here.

The CMP has identified five areas that have the greatest risk to fragmentation and a reduction in landscape connectivity for the Crown. These areas include:

  • Highway 3 corridor within the Alberta and British Columbia portion of the Crown;
  • Highway 2 corridor within the Montana portion of the Crown;
  • The transboundary watershed along the north fork of the Flathead River in British Columbia and Montana;
  • The continental divide area between Alberta and British Columbia, both north and south of the Highway 3 corridor; and
  • Southwest Alberta headwaters to the west of the Crown in both British Columbia and Montana.

 

 Photo courtesy of Parks Canada