Massif des monts Sutton BioKit: wildlife corridors

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At the highest point of your hike, take two deep breaths and admire the broad natural features stretching out before you.

Wildlife corridors are areas that allow plants and animals to spread or travel from one habitat to another to ensure access to food, shelter and breeding areas. Large mammals such as the bobcat, cougar and black bear need large uninhabited wilderness areas to survive.

In Canada, habitat loss caused by human activities is the main threat to biodiversity. By maintaining wildlife corridors that link regions yet to be developed, we increase the chances for the survival of all species, including humans.

How much space do you think you need to provide for all of your needs? Discuss this among yourselves and, when you get home, calculate your ecological footprint.

The Big Bad Wolf?

Grey wolf. Photo: © iStockphoto.com/GlobalP

For the past century or so, the grey wolf has been absent from the region because of overhunting and the reduction of its home range due to urban and agricultural development.

Its disappearance has had a major impact on the food chain, since it helps to control the population of its prey, such as the white-tailed deer.

Treasures worth protecting!

At the Massif des monts Sutton, some species are becoming rarer or are endangered... They deserve to be treated like the treasures they are!

Cougar. Photo: © iStockphoto.com/Eric Isselée

Myth or Reality?

The cougar is a species likely to be designated threatened or vulnerable in Quebec. Once present throughout North America, it was hunted heavily because its fur was valuable and people feared for their livestock. Although the cougar is quite rare in Quebec, unconfirmed sightings in the Massif des monts Sutton have been reported in recent years.

Among the Conifers

Listen to bird calls. If you hear wee-o, wee-o, wee-o-ti-t-ter-ee, perhaps a Bicknell's Thrush is nearby. It is so rare and so extremely sensitive to human activities such as logging that it has been designated a vulnerable species in Quebec and around the world.

I Breathe Through My Skin

At the bend of a small stream, you may be able to spot a northern spring salamander, a species that has no lungs. A vulnerable species in Quebec, it is currently found only in the southern part of the province.

Bicknell’s Thrush. Photo: Dan Busby © Environment CanadaNorthern spring salamander. Photo: © Appalachian Corridor

Have you spotted any of these species? Help conservation efforts by reporting your observations to Appalachian Corridor.

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