February 09, 2018

Regeneration Surveys

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It's Brad's last day on the job and he wraps up his work term experience with something he's never done before - a regeneration survey. It's been fun to follow Brad through his summer of working for Tolko. We look forward to hearing from him again!

Brad Constantine was selected as one of Greenest Workforce Green Dream bloggers during the summer of 2017. Brad shared some great insight into what it's like to work in the forest industry and to live in Meadow Lake. We'll be re-sharing Brad's summer of blogs over the next several weeks so you can share in his adventure and more about the great opportunities that await you in the forest industry. For more information on the Greenest Workforce visit: http://thegreenestworkforce.ca/index.php/en/home/

By Brad Constantine on October 3, 2017

During the last week in August, I had the opportunity to try something new. I had the chance to survey a cutblock from 2011 to see how the establishment of species was coming. Although this task is not performed a lot in my job. Sometimes it is necessary to survey old cutblocks to make sure the block is reproducing acceptable amounts of merchantable species such as Trembling Aspen, Balsam Polar, and Paper Birch.

I found it neat as to how fast Aspens sprout up from existing roots underground. The reason why the grow back quick is a tactic some trees use called suckering. When the older trees are cut, it signals the roots to commence growth of new trees and you will see aspen saplings come through the earth.

For the past week, I was the only summer student left working at our office. So it was exciting to be able to try something new on my own to help broaden my realm of skills in the forestry industry. Although an establishment survey is fairly easy, it helped to know my deciduous species as it was difficult to distinguish between green alder and paper birch.

The objective of an establishment plot is to accumulate a total of the trees within a 1.78m plot. You then mark the centre of the plot and measure the tallest growing tree in the plot of each species. One thing in the forestry industry is trying not to be biased about where your plot is placed in a block. What I decided to do was to distribute the plots evenly throughout the block. So I divided the block into sections and randomly chose a point in each section before going into the cutblock to take measurements. This method showed an unbiased approach and a just full approach as most blocks vary in soil structure, shrub growth and may have water impacting in areas.

Overall this experience was a great way to finish my last day of work by doing something that out of the ordinary. By doing this, I’ve been able to see blocks before harvest during processing, reclaim, and post block cuts. It’s nice to be able to witness step by step as to what exactly happens in the process of harvesting.