Campaign Chronicles - Spring comes to the Dumoine River watershed


While spring treats us city-dwellers to bird calls, butterflies and blooms, it means the end of hibernation and the return of biting hunger for some wildlife in northern Quebec.

The animals of the Dumoine River watershed are finding it easier to find food this spring: moose are adding sodium-rich lake vegetation to their diets as well as fresh shoots from trees such as white birch, trembling aspen, striped maple and willow.  Black bears are emerging from their dens, April-May and they immediately start to forage for roots and sprouts, as well as fish, insects or small mammals; however 90% of their diet consists of vegetation. Brown bears do not fully hibernate; being easily awakened, which means they are out, roaming the lands surrounding the watershed with their newborns already looking for food.
The wolverines that grace the surroundings of the Dumoine River watershed do not hibernate in the winter and feed almost exclusively on carrion such as wolf kills during this time of year. In late winter females burrowed into snow to create their dens, give birth and remain until their young are weaned, mid-May. Wolverines can only live year-round where snow stays on the ground until late spring, which has led to the valid and ever growing concerns that global warming is shrinking their habitat.

Creating a north-south wildlife corridor along the Dumoine will help to keep these populations healthy.  Most large wildlife need ranges of undisturbed habitat in order to survive with their families, which is one of the many reasons why, more than ever, there is a need to protect more land surrounding the Dumoine River watershed!