Bird study in Canada leads to SFI Conservation Research Award

The unique study of bird populations initiated by UPM and Time Inc. received the first-ever Sustainable Forestry Initiative® (SFI®) Leadership in Conservation Research Award in Canada. The other awarded parties and project partners are the Université de Moncton; the New Brunswick Department of Natural Resources; The Nature Conservancy of Canada, and Bird Studies Canada. The study is expected to improve forestry practices in Canada’s Acadian forests.

The Birds as Bioindicators of Biodiversity Study was selected to receive the award for its strong collaborative partnerships and because its impact will go well beyond lands managed by UPM, allowing other forest managers to use the latest in up-to-date science to guide their forest management activities and ensure they best meet the needs of indicator species.

“This is a truly unique project involving the landowner, academics, conservation groups, forest companies and the customer, all committed to using research to strengthen forest management and deliver real, on-the-ground results,” said Kathy Abusow, SFI President and CEO. “Ongoing research and up-to-date science are key to responsible forest management.”

The Birds as Bioindicators of Biodiversity Study was launched in April 2007, with the first results expected in two to three years. The study is evaluating the reproductive performance of several songbird and woodpecker species in treated and controlled areas of public lands managed by UPM in New Brunswick, with a goal to use results in the development of future best management practices.

The project combines extensive bird surveys and intensive monitoring of the nests of several bird species. One of the species to be monitored is the Pileated Woodpecker, which nests in large dead or dying trees and forages in dead wood such as snags, stumps and fallen dead trees.

The SFI program is one of the largest sustainable forestry certification programs in the world. There are more than 143.7 million acres (58.1 million hectares) certified to the comprehensive SFI Standard across North America, and the SFI labeling program can attest to the fact that the fiber in a product is from a well-managed source. The SFI Standard is based on principles and measures that promote sustainability including measures to protect water quality, biodiversity, wildlife habitat, species at risk and forests of exceptional conservation value.