Energy, Mines and Resources



Our Research:

  • supports a co-operative approach to the identification of research and monitoring priorities
  • includes the development and delivery of research and monitoring programs
  • assists with sustainably managing forest resources in the Yukon

Research Activities

If you would like more information on any of the projects listed below, email

Lewes Marsh Variable Retention Project

Very little formal research has been conducted in Yukon on the relationship between canopy closure and lichen abundance in response to variable retention forest harvesting systems. This study provides an opportunity to conduct research on the relationships and to provide guidance on when, where, and how to prescribe variable retention harvesting treatments in known southern lakes caribou lichen habitat. The results may assist with the development of forestry best management practices and mitigations during planning and project assessments.

The Forest Management Branch and the Department of Environment initiated a study aimed at identifying forest harvesting practices that would minimize deleterious impacts on terrestrial forage lichens in the winter range of the Carcross caribou herd. The project was designed in the summer of 2012 and laid out in the fall of 2013.

During the winters of 2014-15 and 2015-16, variable retention harvesting occurred in three 9 ha blocks that were divided into three treatment units (1/3 basal area removal, 2/3 basal area removal and 100% retention –nonharvested controls). The treatment units are each separated by a 100 m buffer. The site is lodgepole pine dominated with a minor component of white spruce and deciduous trees. The mean DBH of the coniferous trees in the study area is 16.6 cm, with a mean height of 15.9 m.

Post-harvest assessments occurred during the summers of 2016 and 2017. Further monitoring will occur, beginning in 2020. It is expected that lichen growth responses by 2020 will show the effects of the harvest treatments on lichen availability within the caribou winter range. Subsequent reassessments after 2020 will occur in 10 year intervals.

Dawson Permanent Sample Project

Permanent sample plots were established in southern Yukon in 1988 to provide long-term information on the changes in Yukon’s forests.

New plots are currently being established in the Dawson area which will build upon the existing permanent sample monitoring program in Yukon. This project will provide information on tree growth and species composition where permanent sample plot data is currently not available.


Gunnar Nilsson and Mickey Lammers Research Forest

We are involved in managing a network of research forests across the Yukon. These research forests were originally established by the Government of Canada for the purposes of forest research and forest management studies. The first draft strategic plan the Gunnar Nilsson and Mickey Lammers Research Forest was released in 2004.

Emerging Research Activities

We are:

  • supportive of efforts to build local forest management capacity through the communication of research results, and by encouraging opportunities for local participation in research and monitoring projects.
  • interested in research that informs the development of forest-based legislation and policy and identifying best management practices.
  • interested in research in support of implementation of strategic forest management plans, including research that supports the adaptive management of forest resources in the Yukon.
  • actively seeking feedback on research and monitoring needs and is actively encouraging new research partnerships. We are currently working towards standardizing our process for supporting researchers who express an interest in working with us, and our partners, in implementing some of our research and monitoring needs and priorities.

Research - Contact Us:

We are interested in your feedback. If you are currently conducting forestry related research or are considering initiating a research project in the Yukon, we are interested in hearing from you.

General Inquiries
Phone: 867.633.7908
Fax: 867.667.3138