The southeastern Skeena region of British Columbia supports a rich variety of ecosystems with distinctive transitional or ecotonal characteristics. A 2-year pilot study was carried out to inventory and assess rare and endangered terrestrial ecosystems in the low elevation Sub-Boreal Spruce (SBS) and Interior Cedar–Hemlock (ICH) biogeoclimatic zones. Scrub-steppe or savanna-steppe, grassland, and herbaceous meadow ecosystems are highly threatened by changes to fire and grazing regimes, invasive species, and urban/rural development. Riparian or swamp forest ecosystems are other centres of local biodiversity at risk on private, municipal, and Crown land. The Red- and Blue-listing scheme for plant communities is an important first step in raising awareness about rare ecosystems, but will provide little protection in populated areas unless human communities adopt these ecosystems as symbols of local uniqueness and identity.
Haeussler, Sybille, Hetherington, Anne. 1999. Assessing Endangered Ecosystems in the Inland Skeena Region (in Proc. Conference Biology & Management of Species and Habitats at Risk). Ministry of Environment, Lands and Parks. Conference Biology & ManagementProceedings. Vol. 1