June 23, 2017
Using Drones and Remote Sensing Techniques to make Habitat Management Decisions!
These days it seems everyone and their dog has gone a little bit drone crazy! From wedding photographers and real-estate agents, to land surveyors and engineering firms, just about everyone has a drone and is touting it as evidence of their innovation. Unfortunately, most of the innovation is unrealized because so few have the knowledge and technical ability do anything other than produce pretty pictures. Read more
March 22, 2017
I know it doesn’t feel a lot like spring today but, believe it or not, warming spring sunshine is on its way. Soon we will be waking to the sounds of robins and goldfinches outside our windows, rather than the neighbour’s snowblower! Speaking of robins and goldfinches, did you know that it is illegal in Canada to hurt, possess, or even harass a bird, nest, or nesting territory of a bird protected under the Migratory Birds Convention Act? Read more
December 12, 2016
Wetlands are important. You don’t have to take our word for it, lots of other folks agree. Environment Canada, for instance, says that wetlands are “among the most productive habitats on Earth”, and goes on to say that “if we continue to lose wetlands, a large and important piece of the natural system that keeps our world healthy will disappear.” The Government of Alberta agrees too! The Alberta Wetland Policy states that wetlands “play an important role in sustaining healthy watersheds by protecting water quality, providing water storage and infiltration, providing habitat for wildlife, fish and plants, and sustaining biodiversity.” Even industry organizations like the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers (CAPP) state that “wetlands are vital to the sustainability of ecosystems as they filter water, store carbon, recharge groundwater, protect biological diversity and act as flood protection.”
October 15, 2016
A lot of planning goes in to designing a North American City. Area Structure Plans that lay out specific land uses, transportation systems, population goals, provision of essential services and facilities, and considers things like expected population growth, and types and sources of employment often happen decades in advance of development.
July 17, 2016
At Fiera Biological, we know a lot about nature and wildlife. A lot of what we know we have learned through years of observation – not just in the course of wildlife consulting, but in our every day outdoor activities. At the coffee shop, for sure, some of us are people watchers, but once we are out of doors, we are all bird beholders, squirrel spyers, lily lookers, frog fixators, orchid oglers, and coyote casers. I don’t mean to brag, but from a hundred meters away, we can detect and properly identify species by sounds most people might not recognize as being from wildlife at all. Some of our wildlife consultants are expert trackers too; we can look at scuffmarks in the snow, and see the tell-tail sign of a least weasel passing by, or note that both a wolf and a coyote has passed by while stepping in the footprints of a boreal caribou. I know, impressive, right? We’re pretty up to date on our plants too. Grasses? Got’em covered. Mosses? … not a problem. Still there are things that we can’t do. For instance, we don’t have ultrasonic hearing, and that is a problem when one of our clients needs us to identify the species of bat occurring at a proposed development, or to determine if a particular bit of habitat is being utilized by bats.