Browsing by ungulates and reduced water availability can adversely impact seedlings establisment in a context of assisted migration plantations. This is the subject of a recently published forest research brief produced by the DREAM-Qc team. Émilie Champagne, Roxanne Turgeon, Alison Munson, and Patricia Raymond conducted a greenhouse experiment examining how seedlings from the DREAM-Qc mixedwood site would react to winter browsing and reduced water availability. The seedlings were subjected to simulated browsing while dormant and later had their water availability limited once they had reached the budding stage. The results suggest that red oak, sugar maple, and black cherry can tolerate a browsing event and that both sugar maple and eastern white pine can tolerate a reduction water availability. Upcoming data from the Portneuf experimental site should allow to validate these results under field conditions.
To access the research article the brief is based on, click here.