Field Studies 2021

Field Studies

Scientific field studies will be taking place along the proposed alternative corridors to understand the existing conditions of the environment including terrain, groundwater, surface water, fish, birds, wildlife, and vegetation. The studies will be conducted during multiple seasons over several years The information we collect through these studies will be strengthened by the Indigenous Knowledge (IK) that will be shared with us by Webequie and Marten Falls First Nations and the neighbouring Indigenous Communities through the IK Program.


2021 Surveys Date (From) Date (To)
Waterfowl – Spring #1 May 11, 2021 May 13, 2021

Waterfowl – Spring #2

ARU Deployment

May 25, 2021 June 4, 2021
Fish and Fish Habitat – Spring May 31, 2021 June 10, 2021
Breeding Birds #1 June 10, 2021 June 18, 2021
Vegetation – Spring June 10, 2021 June 23, 2021
Breeding Birds #2 June 23, 2021 July 2, 2021
Vegetation – Summer July 5, 2021 July 18, 2021
ARU Maintenance August 9, 2021 August 20, 2021
Fish and Fish Habitat – Summer August 9, 2021 August 19, 2021
Waterfowl – Fall #1 14-Aug-2021 17-Aug-2021
Terrain/Ground Truthing August 22, 2021 August 28, 2021
Vegetation – Fall September 7, 2021 September 16, 2021

Waterfowl – Fall #2

ARU Maintenance

October 15, 2021 October 19, 2021

Terrain Surveys: Soil surveys using a hand auger to ground-truth existing terrain maps, identify potential aggregate, and thickness of peat.

Fish and Fish Habitat Surveys: Includes fish habitat assessments and fish community sampling using minnow traps and eDNA. These were conducted at potential water crossings in spring and summer.

Breeding Bird Surveys: Installation of Acoustic Recording Units (ARU) and point count surveys to determine presence/absence of species as well as abundance/distribution and the status and trends in the bird populations. The ARUs are left in place year-round, with field crews periodically replacing their batteries and SD cards. Point counts are conducted by skilled observers to identify birds by sight and sound.

Waterfowl Migration Surveys: Low-level aerial surveys over water bodies (lakes, ponds, stream and rivers to estimate the seasonal distribution, abundance and density of waterfowl, shorebirds and raptors. These surveys are conducted in spring and fall.

Bat Surveys: Installation of ultrasonic Acoustic Recording Units (ARU) to identify bat species and distribution within in the study area. They are set up in the spring and taken down in the fall, with field crews periodically replacing their batteries and SD cards.

Vegetation Surveys/Ecological Land Classification (ELC): Vegetation surveys consist of plots to sample and record vegetation in the study area. Field data collection aligns with the provincial ELC program for the boreal region. These surveys were conducted across three seasons including spring, summer and fall.

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