Cataloguing in situ genetic resources

In order to evaluate the current degree of protection and the need for additional gene conservation activities, good census information is needed.  In this study, species frequency values from tens of thousands of botanical plots in the province were integrated with spatial biogeoclimatic ecosystem classification (BEC) and protected area data using GIS and spatial analysis.  The data analysis, originally compiled at the BGC variant/subzone level, is summarized here by BGC zone.  For each zone we present a brief description of the general geographic location, climate, species composition and species in situ conservations status.  The climate, species and the protected area data and statistics are from Hamann et al. 2004, 2005, and the in situ conservation status summaries are based on Chourmouzis et al. 2009.  These publications contain detailed descriptions of the methodologies used to calculate species abundance (cumulative cover distributions) from species frequency values (percent cover), population sizes within protected areas, and the threshold values needed to ensure the conservation of long-term genetic resources.   In this study, large sized tree species were considered adequately protected in a BGC zone if calculated to occur in at least three protected areas, each with a threshold population size of at least 10 ha cumulative cover.

Reference material

For more information on biogeoclimate ecosystem classification see BEC and BGC units,  BGC unit names/codes, the climate analysis results, and the climate data generated using ClimateBC/WNA.


Hamann, A., Smets, P., Aitken, S. N. and Yanchuk, A. D. 2005. An ecogeographic framework for in situ conservation of forest trees in British Columbia. Can. J. For. Res. 35:2553-2561. “Supplementary Data” for this publication are posted on the CFCG website.

Hamann, A., S. N. Aitken, A. D. Yanchuk. 2004. Cataloguing in situ protection of genetic resources for major commercial forest trees in British Columbia. Forest Ecology and Management 197: 295-305. “Extended Manuscript and Data” is available for download.

Chourmouzis C, A. Hamann, A.D. Yanchuk, P. Smets and S.N. Aitken. 2009. Forest Tree Genetic Conservation Status Report 1: In Situ Conservation Status of All Indigenous B.C. Species. Centre for Forest Conservation Genetics, Forest Genetics Council of BC, and BC Ministry of Forests and Range, Forest Science Program, Victoria, BC. Technical Report Technical Report 053. Report.