Travaillant Lake Post Fire Pilot Project
Principal Investigator: Maier, Kris (6)
Licence Number: 14774
Organization: Gwich'in Renewable Resources Board
Licenced Year(s): 2010
Issued: Aug 03, 2010
Project Team: Gwichya Gwich'in Renewable Resource Council (Project Management, Gwichya Gwich'in Renewable Resource Council), Rebecca Kaufman (Technician, GRRB), Amie Charlie (Technician, GRRB), Tsiigehtchic students (4 - TBA) (Education), Tsiigehtchic env. monitors (6 - TBA) (Environmental Monitoring / Technicians)

Objective(s): To collect baseline data in and around Travaillant Lake for vegetation, fish stock, water quality and invertebrate community

Project Description: This is a community-driven collaborative project. The Gwichya RRC is the project manager. The community asked for this research to be completed and the GRRB and ENR are providing logistical and technical support. All hiring will be done in the community to maximize community involvement and benefits.

The goals of this study are to:
1) Collect baseline vegetation data in habitats around Travaillant Lake.
2) Collect information on tree and shrub species diversity and growth rates.
3) Collect information on lichen species diversity and growth rates.
4) Assess overall wildlife habitat suitability.
5) Assess fish stock abundance
6) Assess lake water quality
7) Collect baseline information on the invertebrate community of Travaillant Lake

The Researchers will fly into the site approximately Aug 3rd, 2010 to begin fisheries sampling. All fisheries sampling will be directly comparable to previous GRRB and DFO sampling. New sampling will include Canadian Aquatic Biomonitoring Network (CABIN) protocols.

The methods for this will be to sample fish using experimental mesh gillnets for ten days using various soak times. Record all biological information as well as preserve samples for further analysis. Eg: flesh, otoliths, gonads, stomach contents. During this time also take water samples and conduct CABIN protocols for the collection of benthic invertebrates in the Travaillant River. Oxygen profiles will also be taken to address concerns that there may not be enough dissolved oxygen in the water for some species of fish to survive.

The researchers will fly into the site approximately August 20th, 2010 to complete vegetation fieldwork.
The methodology for this segment of the study will be to locate 32 sample plots in four zones around Travaillant Lake (Eight plots per zone). Three zones will be in different aged burns; one zone will act as a control and will be located in an unburned area. In each plot, vegetation species will be determined and where possible, aged using standard coring procedures. Lichen species will be identified, enumerated and where possible, aged. Soil types may be assessed if time permits.

Two GRRB summer students will participate in various aspects of the fieldwork. The researchers are exploring the possibility of bringing an elder out to the camp to educate the youth about the history of the Travaillant Lake area and the importance of Traditional Knowledge in today's management.

The Gwichya RRC is the project manager, so they will be actively involved in all stages of the project. As a result of this, all of the information collected will be readily available to the community. A project summary will also be prepared by the GRRB and presented in Tsiigehtchic and/or all RRCs on request. A plain language report will also be prepared.

The fieldwork for this study will be conducted from August 3, 2010 to August 27, 2010.