Réserve faunique de Rimouski


Wildlife management

Wildlife reserves are ideal environments for improving wildlife and habitat conservation skills and knowledge. Accordingly, universities and CEGEPs conduct research on aquatic and terrestrial fauna to better understand animal population development and the role of habitats. However, all research or management projects must be pre-approved by the Ministère de l'Environnement, de la Lutte contre les changements climatiques, de la Faune et des Parcs (MELCCFP), which oversees wildlife management in Québec.

Aquatic fauna

In wildlife reserves, the protection and enhancement of populations of indigenous fish species used in sport fishing is a priority. Over the years, hundreds of lakes have been analyzed. These studies aim to improve our understanding of the fish living in these lakes and of their habitats. They enable the most strategic parts of lakes for reproduction of sport-fishing species to be identified and their performance mesured. They also help to better protect or restore them, when appropriate. Several research studies have been conducted on some species and their habitat, such as the brook trout.

Many developments have been made in wildlife reserves to restore/boost the productivity of certain lakes/spawning grounds. Each wildlife reserve is equipped with a master plan that targets and guides the protection or improvement of fish habitat. Efforts have also been made regarding the periodical maintenance of spawning grounds designed to ensure that they remain functional and effective.

Terrestrial fauna

Moose populations on wildlife reserves undergo aerial surveys conducted jointly by Sépaq and the MELCCFP. MELCCFP biologists perform these surveys, given their expertise in the area. Surveys are used to measure changes in moose population density and learn about their composition These survey results affect restrictions on moose hunting.

In some wildlife reserves, salt marsh management efforts and improved access to hunting areas have increased the visibility of game. Moreover, some research projects are being conducted to better adapt the forest layout to the habitat needs of certain terrestrial fauna species. Elsewhere, forest management projects adapted to the habitat needs of the ruffed grouse are underway.

Integrated wildlife-forest-recreation management

Use of multiple resources in wildlife reserves

Wildlife reserves are located on public land. The use of natural resources (forests, mines, gasoline, natural gas, hydraulic and wind-energy) is allowed. The government decides who and how natural resources will be managed and used on public land.

The mandate of Sépaq only involves managing sport hunting recreational activities in the wildlife reserves. Sépaq neither manages nor uses other natural resources found in the wildlife reserves.

It is therefore important to integrate the use of other natural resources in conservation practices and the promotion of wildlife and wildlife reserves.

Integration of wildlife-forest-recreation

Forests located in wildlife reserves are used by the forestry industry pursuant of planning for forest management which is under the jurisdiction of the Ministère des Ressources naturelles et des Forêts (MRNF). To better integrate forestry practices with activities offered on the reserves, Sépaq initiated talks with the MRNF and the industry to convince them to apply in the planning and response of forest management measures to minimize usage conflicts and impacts on biodiversity, the environment and the climate for the practice of wildlife and recreational activities in wildlife reserves.

In order to equip wildlife reserve managers in terms of integrated wildlife-forest-recreation forestry management and to guide the MRNF in harmonizing forestry planning for these unique territories so that the different types of forestry interventions are more predictable, better adapted, and more likely to help fulfil the particular vocation of wildlife reserves, Sépaq has carried out a number of so-called IRM (integrated resource management) projects.

Consult the list of completed projects (in French only)

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