Mount Arrowsmith

©Arrowsmith Aerial Photography
Englishman River Estuary

This biosphere reserve is located on the east coast of Vancouver Island in British Columbia. It is close to the Clayoquot Sound Biosphere Reserve, located on the other side of the island. Situated in the Coastal Douglas-fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii) biogeoclimatic zone, the forests in the area were logged in the early 1900’s. Today, second-growth trees are reaching harvestable size which leads to pressures from the logging industries.

Designation date: 2000
Administrative authorities: Mount Arrowsmith Biosphere Foundation
Surface area (terrestrial and marine): 118,592 ha
Core area(s): 3,548 ha
Buffer zone(s): 1,500 ha
Transition area(s): 113,544 ha

Location
Latitude:
49°04'N - 49°18'N
Longitude: 124°05'W - 124°25'W
Midpoint: 49°11'N - 124°15'W

Ecological Characteristics

©Mount Arrowsmith Biosphere Region
View of Mount Arrowsmith and Nanoose Estuary

This biosphere reserve is located on the east coast of Vancouver Island in British Columbia. It is close to the Clayoquot Sound Biosphere Reserve, located on the other side of the island.

Situated in the Coastal Douglas-fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii) bio geoclimatic zone, the forests in the area were logged in the early 1900’s. Today, second-growth trees are reaching harvestable size which leads to pressures from the logging industries. The Mount Arrowsmith Biosphere Reserve includes the entire water shed draining the area. Management focuses on the maintenance of healthy aquatic, coastal estuarine and intertidal ecosystems.

Because the health of these ecosystems is directly influenced by the integrity of streams and rivers flowing into them, these have been defined as the buffer zone.

The area is under continuous urban development pressures. The biosphere reserve concept is believed to provide an ideal framework within which to address the complex problems facing Mount Arrowsmith today.

The area is on the Pacific migratory bird flyway and includes critical migration and wintering habitats for many avian species. The endangered Vancouver Island Marmot (Marmota vancouverensis) and Vancouver Island White-tailed Ptarmigan (Lagopus leucura vancouverensis) occur in alpine habitats, and two endemic species of stickleback occur in one freshwater lake.

Socio-Economic Characteristics

©Arrowsmith Aerial Photography

Approximately 38,000 residents live permanently in the area, which can total up to 43,000 people depending on the season (2000). Coastal Salish First Nations live in the biosphere reserve.

However, today the population is dominated by descendants of European immigrants. Tourism and service industries but also fishing and forestry provide the main sources of income for people.


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