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Assessment of Potential Non-motorized Human Disturbance Impacts of the Proposed Spearhead Traverse Hut… Mill, Sian Sep 30, 2015

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		ASSESSMENT OF POTENTIAL NON-MOTORIZED HUMAN DISTURBANCE IMPACTS OF THE PROPOSED SPEARHEAD TRAVERSE HUT SYSTEM ON THE MOUNTAIN GOAT POPULATION IN GARIBALDI PARK AND THE SURROUNDING REGION   by  SIAN MILL  MAP, The University of British Columbia, 2015  A PROJECT IN PARTIAL FULFILMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF  MASTERS OF ARTS (PLANNING)   in  THE FACULTY OF GRADUATE STUDIES  School of Community and Regional Planning   We accept this project as conforming to the require standard   ……………………………….  ………………………………..  ………………………………..   THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA September 2015 © Sian Mill, 2015         		 iiAssessment of Potential Non-motorized Human Disturbance Impacts of the Proposed Spearhead Traverse Hut System on the Mountain Goat Population in Garibaldi Park and the Surrounding Region       Sian Mill        2015     Mountain	Goat	at	Garibaldi	Lake.	Photo	by	@	BCHikingGirl	(Twitter).			 iii         																													All	 rights	 reserved.	 This	 report	 may	 not	 be	 reproduced	 in	 whole	 or	 in	 part,	 by	photocopy	or	other	means,	without	the	permission	of	the	author.		 			 ivExecutive Summary  	As	 the	 interest	 in	 non‐motorized	 backcountry	 exploration	 gains	 traction	 among	locals	and	tourists	in	British	Columbia’s	Parks,	there	have	been	concerns	expressed	about	potential	impacts	on	local	wildlife	populations.	I	undertook	this	study	to	help	BC	 Parks	 assess	 the	 existing	 mountain	 goat	 population	 in	 the	 Spearhead	 area	 of	Garibaldi	Park	and	to	gain	a	better	understanding	for	how	the	potential	increase	in	non‐motorized	 recreation	due	 to	 the	proposed	Spearhead	Hut	System	could	affect	the	population.	Collecting	data	through	a	literature	review,	interviews	with	experts	and	 participatory	 mapping	 exercises,	 this	 study	 focuses	 on	 human	 disturbance	impacts	 on	 mountain	 goats.	 These	 disturbance	 impacts	 are	 assessed	 through	different	senses	and	are	categorized	as	follows:	proximity,	feeding,	communication	interruption,	 reproduction	 and	 population	 viability,	 and	 seasonality.	 Finally,	 this	study	 recommends	monitoring	and	evaluating	 the	population	before	and	after	 the	proposed	 huts	 have	 been	 installed,	 as	 well	 as	 suggestions	 for	 regulating	 and	minimizing	 the	 human	 and	 goat	 interactions.	 	 These	 suggestions	 include	 keeping	recreationists	quiet	and	the	trails	free	of	dogs,	educating	users	of	the	area,	and	using	local	knowledge	to	collect	presence	and	abundance	data.				 			 vTable of Contents 1.0	Introduction	........................................................................................................................	1	2.0	Literature	Review	..............................................................................................................	5	2.1	Introduction	..................................................................................................................................	5	2.2	Goat’s	Reaction	to	Human	Disturbance	...............................................................................	6	2.3	Human	Disturbance	Impacts	...................................................................................................	7	2.3.1	Proximity	................................................................................................................................................	9	2.3.2	Feeding	.................................................................................................................................................	10	2.3.3	Communication	Interruption	......................................................................................................	12	2.3.4	Reproduction	and	Population	Viability	..................................................................................	13	2.4	Suggested	Management	Recommendations	...................................................................	13	2.5	Conclusion	...................................................................................................................................	14	3.0	Research	Methodology	.................................................................................................	15	3.1	Expert	Interviews	.....................................................................................................................	15	3.2	Participatory	Mapping	............................................................................................................	17	3.3	Discussions	with	BC	Parks	....................................................................................................	18	4.0	Results	................................................................................................................................	18	4.1	Expert	Interviews	.....................................................................................................................	18	4.1.1	Human	Disturbance	Impacts	.......................................................................................................	18	4.1.2	Proximity	.............................................................................................................................................	19	4.1.3	Feeding	.................................................................................................................................................	20	4.1.4	Reproduction	and	Population	Viability	..................................................................................	20	4.1.5	Seasonality	..........................................................................................................................................	21	4.1.6	Management	.......................................................................................................................................	22	4.2	Participatory	Mapping	Exercise	..........................................................................................	23	5.0	Discussion	.........................................................................................................................	26	6.0	Conclusion	and	Recommendations	..........................................................................	28			List of Figures Figure	1	‐	Map	of	the	Mountain	Goat	Winter	Range	in	the	Spearhead	Study	Area	Figure	2	‐	Map	of	Goat	Sightings	Within	the	Spearhead	Study	Area	Appendices Appendix	A	–	Expert	Interview	Guide	Questions	Appendix	B	–	Base	Map	for	Summer	Goat	Sightings	Appendix	C	‐	Base	Map	for	Winter	Goat	Sightings					 11.0	Introduction		The	 Spearhead	 Traverse	 follows	 the	 Fitzsimmons	 Range	 from	 the	 Whistler	Mountain	 /Garibaldi	 Provincial	 Park	 boundary	 at	 Flute	 Mountain,	 around	 to	 the	Spearhead	Range	at	the	edge	of	the	Blackcomb	Mountain	/	Garibaldi	Provincial	Park	boundary.	BC	Parks	recently	approved	an	amendment	to	the	management	plan	for	Garibaldi	 Park	 that	 designates	 backcountry	 huts	 as	 acceptable	 in	 the	 Spearhead	Range	 area	 of	 the	 park,	 subject	 to	 a	 list	 of	 conditions	 that	 includes	 minimizing	impacts	to	mountain	goats	(BC	Parks,	2014).	In	December	2014,	the	Spearhead	Huts	Committee	 submitted	 a	 Park	Use	 Permit	 application	 to	 BC	 Parks	 proposing	 up	 to	three	backcountry	huts	in	the	Spearhead	Range.		In	 2008,	 there	 was	 an	 estimated	 1,000	 to	 1,700	 mountain	 goats	 in	 the	 Lower	Mainland	 (Mountain	 Goat	 Management	 Team,	 2010).	 In	 B.C,	 mountain	 goats	 are	ranked	 as	 ‘apparently	 secure’	 by	 the	B.C.	 Conservation	Data	 Centre.	However,	 the	Conservation	Framework	has	assigned	 them	a	conservation	priority	1,	 the	highest	rank	 under	 goal	 2:	 prevent	 species	 and	 ecosystems	 from	 becoming	 at	 risk	 (ibid).	Although	 non‐motorized	 recreation	 such	 as	 hiking	 and	 backcountry	 skiing	 are	generally	considered	less	disruptive	to	mountain	goats	than	motorized	recreation,	it	is	 possible	 that	 the	 proposed	 hut	 project	 and	 the	 associated	 increase	 in	 non‐motorized	recreation	could	have	adverse	effects	on	the	mountain	goat	population	in	the	area	through	sight,	scent	or	sound	disturbance.	For	this	project	 I	have	worked	with	BC	Parks	to	study	the	potential	effect	of	 the	proposed	Spearhead	Hut	System	on	the	mountain	goat	population.			Studying	the	importance	of	the	mountain	goat,	their	role	in	the	ecosystem	and	their	exposure	to	human	intervention	is	crucial	for	many	reasons.	They	are	a	flagship	and	an	umbrella	species	(Markegard,	2014).	As	a	flagship	species	they	have	the	ability	to	capture	 the	 imagination	 of	 the	 public	 and	 induce	 people	 to	 support	 conservation	action	 (Walpole	 &	 Leader‐Williams,	 2002)	 and	 as	 an	 umbrella	 species	 their			 2conservation	 is	 expected	 to	 confer	 protection	 to	 a	 large	 number	 of	 naturally	 co‐occurring	 species	 (Roberge	 &	 Angelstam,	 2002).	 Mountain	 goats	 are	 particularly	sensitive	 to	 human	 disturbance,	 so	 providing	 protection	 to	 this	 species	 is	 an	indicator	of	our	wilderness	values.	In	addition,	mountain	goat	health	and	continuity	are	 indicators	 of	 healthy	 alpine	 ecosystems;	 if	 other	 ecosystem	 values	 such	 as	vegetation	and	water	quality	are	in	good	condition	in	the	alpine,	then	the	goats	that	rely	on	 this	habitat	 should	be	 in	 good	 condition	as	well.	All	 of	 these	 factors	make	mountain	goats	a	vital	focal	animal	for	studies	of	habitat	and	behavioral	disturbance	by	 humans	 (Markegard,	 2014).	 However,	 mountain	 goats	 are	 one	 of	 the	 least	studied	 ungulate	 species	 in	 North	 America	 due	 to	 their	 relative	 scarcity	 and	inaccessible	habitat	(Wilson	&	Shackleton,	2001).			BC	Parks	has	collected	 information	on	 the	mountain	goat	population	over	 the	 last	several	decades.		This	information	is	summarized	in	the	Garibaldi	Park	Management	Plan	Amendment	for	the	Spearhead	Area	(BC	Parks,	2014),	specifically	appendix	1.	It	 includes	 winter	 range	 counts,	 mapped	 locations	 of	 winter	 ranges,	 and	 some	information	 on	 potential	 distribution	 of	 summer	 habitat.	 The	 assessment	summarized	 in	Appendix	1	also	considered	a	GIS	analysis	suggesting	that	summer	habitat	 for	mountain	 goats	may	 be	widely	 available	 and	widely	 distributed	 in	 the	Spearhead	area,	this	is	also	supported	by	an	aerial	survey	in	October	of	2014.				 3	Figure	1:	Map	of	the	Mountain	Goat	Winter	Range	in	the	Spearhead	Study	Area	(BC	Parks,	2014).		BC	Park’s	research	considers	the	two	habitats	that	are	crucial	to	the	survival	of	the	mountain	goats:	the	steep,	less	snowy	terrain	providing	nourishment	and	protection	for	 the	goats	 in	 the	winter	 (“winter	 range,”	 Figure	1)	 and	 the	 spring	and	 summer	parturition	and	forage	sites	for	the	goats,	specifically	the	nannies	and	kids.	Between	1978	and	2000	goats	were	observed	during	the	winter	on	two	winter	ranges:	one	on	the	steep	slopes	on	the	north	side	of	Fitzsimmons	Creek	watershed,	and	one	to	the	north	and	east	of	Cheakamus	Lake.	More	recently,	surveys	in	March	2012	and	2013	showed	 numbers	 of	 goats	 that	 were	 higher	 than	 observed	 in	 the	 past	 on	 these	winter	 ranges	 and	were	high	 relative	 to	 goat	populations	 elsewhere	 in	 the	 region	(BC	 Parks,	 2014).	 “Birthing	 sites	 are	 generally	 widely	 dispersed	 within	 or	 near	winter	 ranges,	 often	 in	 rugged,	 inaccessible	 cliffs	 but	 with	 limited	 precipitous			 4habitat,	and	may	occur	near	treeline	within	the	forest”	(Mountain	Goat	Management	Team,	2010).		The	objective	for	this	study	is	to	inform	BC	Parks	about	the	potential	effects	of	the	Spearhead	Hut	 System	 on	 the	 resident	mountain	 goat	 population	 in	 the	 Garibaldi	region	 and	make	 suggestions	 for	 the	mitigation	 of	 possible	 adverse	 effects.	 I	 will	achieve	this	objective	by:			1. Identifying	 established	 routes	 used	 by	 recreationists	 and	 locations	 where	goats	are	encountered,	 to	help	 identify	areas	of	potential	 future	 interaction	between	goats	and	people;		2. Identifying	any	threats	from	the	Spearhead	Hut	System	to	the	mountain	goat	population	focusing	on	sight,	scent	and	noise	disturbances;	and	3. Proposing	 recommendations	 to	 monitor	 and	 evaluate	 the	 goat	 population	once	the	Spearhead	Hut	System	is	in	place.		This	 objective	 will	 be	met	 by	 collecting	 data	 through	 various	means:	 a	 literature	review,	 interviews	 with	 experts,	 discussions	 with	 BC	 Parks,	 and	 participatory	mapping	exercises.			I	 will	 start	 by	 reviewing	 existing	 literature	 to	 identify	 what	 studies	 have	 been	completed	 pertaining	 to	 mountain	 goat	 populations	 in	 the	 area	 and	 throughout	North	 America.	 There	 is	 some	 existing	 information	 on	 mountain	 goats	 in	 the	Garibaldi	 region,	 including	 the	 location	 of	 mountain	 goat	 winter	 ranges	 and	 the	potential	 location	of	their	summer	range.	 It	 is	possible	that	the	proposed	huts	will	be	 used	 in	 both	 the	 winter	 and	 the	 summer,	 so	 this	 research	 considered	 the	potential	 impact	 of	 summer	 use	 of	 the	 cabins	 and	 associated	 activities,	 hiking	 for	example,	as	well	as	the	noise,	visual	and	smell	disturbance	in	both	seasons.					 5Additionally,	 the	 habitat	 requirements	 and	 preferences	 of	 mountain	 goats	 at	different	times	of	year	are	fairly	well	described	in	the	literature.	The	most	valuable	information	 collected	 during	 this	 study,	 also	 the	 most	 challenging,	 was	 the	information	regarding	how	mountain	goats	may	respond	to	the	huts	and	the	people	occupying	 them.	This	 information	was	 collected	by	 interviewing	ungulate	 experts.	Discussions	with	BC	Parks	and	using	 local	knowledge	 through	a	mapping	exercise	with	users	allowed	for	a	better	understanding	of	the	baseline	data	and	the	current	mountain	goat	population.	2.0 Literature Review 2.1 Introduction 	As	interest	in	outdoor	recreation	has	increased,	there	is	growing	concern	about	its	impact	 on	 the	wildlife	 and	 their	 habitat	 (Boyle	 &	 Samson,	 1983).	 One	 analysis	 of	North	American	ecotourism	markets	suggested	that	seeing	wildlife	is	one	of	the	top	setting	attributes	desired	in	a	tourist	experience	(Wight,	1996).	This	study	will	focus	specifically	on	the	existing	mountain	goat	(Oreamnos	americanus)	population	in	the	Spearhead	Range,	just	east	of	Whistler	in	Garibaldi	Park.	Non‐motorized	recreation,	such	as	hiking,	camping	and	skiing,	has	 increased	 in	 the	Spearhead	Range	and	the	Alpine	Club	of	Canada’s	proposed	hut	system	will	encourage	more	use	of	the	area.	These	goats	may	be	particularly	susceptible	to	increased	users	in	the	area	because	they	 require	 many	 habitats	 for	 survival	 during	 different	 times	 of	 the	 year,	specifically	 winter	 range,	 spring	 parturition	 (birthing)	 sites,	 and	 foraging	 habitat	spring	through	fall.				There	have	been	many	studies	done	on	how	motorized	activities	affect	goats,	such	as	 helicopters,	 cars	 on	 highways,	 ATVs,	 and	 motorized/industrial	 activities	associated	with	mining	(Côté,	1996;	Gordon	&	Wilson,	2004	;	Goldstein,	Poe,	Cooper,	Youkey,	 Brown,	 &	McDonald,	 2005;	 Foster	&	 Rahs,	 1983).	 Experts	 on	 the	 species	maintain	that	mountain	goats	will	avoid	areas	where	there	is	motorized	activity.	For			 6example,	Côté	(2003)	reports	that	a	goat	population	in	west‐central	Alberta	that	has	been	 exposed,	 since	 1988,	 to	 about	 three	 to	 five	 people	 per	 day	 on	 motorized	vehicles	will	 still	 flee	when	people	 come	within	200	metres,	or	ATVs	within	1	km	(Nelson,	 2001).	 Further,	 information	 from	 his	 field	 studies	 reveal	 that	 helicopter	and	 ATV	 noises	 cause	 reactionary	 behaviour	 in	 mountain	 goats,	 even	 when	 the	source	is	up	to	2	km	away.	It	is	lesser	known	what	effects	non‐motorized	activities,	such	as	skiing	and	hiking,	will	have	on	mountain	goats.		Throughout	this	study	I	tried	to	collect	as	much	information	that	directly	applied	to	mountain	 goats.	 However,	 there	 are	 some	 instances	 where	 I	 have	 to	 make	assumptions	about	mountain	goats	based	on	other	animals,	and	other	ungulates.	If	the	 term	 ‘mountain	goat’	or	 ‘goat’	 is	used,	 the	 following	 information	was	collected	specifically	about	mountain	goats.	If	I	have	used	a	term	such	as	animal,	wildlife,	or	ungulate,	I	am	speaking	more	generally	and	the	information	does	not	explicitly	refer	to	mountain	goats.			2.2 Goat’s Reaction to Human Disturbance 	While	animals	in	general	are	frightened	by	quick	movements	towards	them	(Knight	&	 Cole,	 1995),	 such	 occasions	 where	 animals	 are	 truly	 startled	 (and	 therefore	possibly	agitated	and	aggressive)	are	infrequent	enough	that	possible	ill‐effects	are	negligible	 or	 short‐term.	 Animals	 tend	 to	 avoid	 known	 human	 hiking	 paths,	although	 humans	 in	 a	 predictable	 hiking	 context	 (i.e.,	 on	 trails)	 were	 less	threatening	 to	 ungulates	 than	 humans	 hiking	 off	 trails	 (Stankowich,	 2008)	 and	behavioural	 responses	 are	 strongest	 when	 hikers	 are	 in	 the	 presence	 of	 dogs	(Wilson	 &	 Shackleton,	 2001).	 Although	 no	 dogs	 are	 allowed	 in	 Garibaldi	 Park,	compliance	with	this	rule	is	far	from	100%.	Therefore,	enforcement	of	the	no	dogs	rule	will	 be	 important	once	 the	 Spearhead	Huts	have	been	put	 in	place;	 it	will	 be	crucial	 to	 have	 signage	 and	 beneficial	 to	 have	 enforcement	 at	 the	 trail	 head	 to	ensure	the	rule	is	clear.				 7Knight	and	Cole	(1991)	present	three	classes	of	wildlife	responses	to	humans:	1. Attraction:	The	strengthening	of	an	animal’s	behavior	as	a	result	of	positive	reinforcement	 (e.g.	 food,	 shelter	 or	 security).	 This	 implies	 a	 movement	toward	stimuli;		2. Avoidance:	An	aversion	to	negative	consequences	associated	with	a	stimulus.	Escape	is	a	reaction	to	avoidance;	and	3. Habituation:	A	waning	of	response	to	a	repeated,	neutral	stimulus.	This	term	is	often	misapplied	and	confused	with	attraction.	Habituation	has	little	to	do	with	 the	 word	 “habit”,	 as	 it	 implies	 disregard	 for	 stimuli	 rather	 than	continuous	 reaction	 to	 it.	 Markegard	 (2014)	 adds	 a	 fourth	 category:	Sensitization,	 which	 is	 the	 opposite	 of	 habituation.	 It	 is	 the	 increased	response	to	a	stimulus.		A	study	 in	Montana	 found	that	mountain	goats	habituated	to	vehicle	 traffic	and	to	humans	 at	 the	Walton	 Goat	 Lick.	 They	 regarded	 the	 highway	 and	 its	 sounds	 as	 a	threat	but	ignored	trains	passing	by	across	the	river	as	well	as	the	sounds	of	visitors	(Singer,	 1978).	 It	 is	 important	 to	 understand	 that	 what	 may	 appear	 to	 be	habituation	may	actually	mean	 that	 the	goats	are	 food	or	habitat	 limited	and	 thus	appear	to	tolerate	humans,	even	though	they	may	still	be	causing	stress	(Markegard,	2014).		2.3 Human Disturbance Impacts 	Previous	 studies	 have	 shown	 that	 the	 disturbance	 context	 plays	 a	 large	 role	 in	determining	the	ways	that	wildlife	will	react	to	certain	human	activities	(Markegard,	2014).	 In	 general,	 few	 interactions	 are	 likely	 to	 occur	 between	 humans	 and	mountain	goats	because	mountain	goats	typically	reside	in	high	elevation,	subalpine	ecosystems	 that	 are	 generally	 inhospitable	 for	 or	 protected	 from	 human	infrastructure	 (Markegard,	 2014).	 Mountain	 goats	 appear	 to	 react	 to	 human	disturbance	 to	 a	 higher	 degree	 than	 most	 ungulates.	 Although	 some	 apparent			 8habituation	 has	 been	 observed	 in	 populations	 to	 predictable,	 continuous,	 non‐threatening	 stimuli,	 no	 habituation	 has	 been	 observed	 in	 other	 populations	(Mountain	 Goat	 Management	 Team,	 2010).	 Some	 of	 the	 possible	 impacts	 of	recreational	 development	 could	 be	 the	 introduction	 of	 disturbances	 such	 as	 air,	water,	 and	 noise	 pollution,	 garbage	 dumps,	 and	 interference	 with	 mineral	 licks	(Boyle	 &	 Samson,	 1985).	 Some	 of	 these	 impacts	 will	 be	 easier	 to	 manage	 than	others.	As	well,	 inadvertent	disturbance	of	 large	mammals	by	hikers	usually	has	a	negative	 influence	 on	 their	 distribution	 and	 movement	 through	 displacement	 of	animals	from	trails	(Boyle	&	Samson,	1985).		Impacts	from	recreationists	can	be	direct	or	indirect.	Direct	impacts	resulting	from	recreation	 could	 include	 harvest	 and	 harassment,	 while	 indirect	 impacts	significantly	 modify	 habitat	 (Markegard,	 2014).	 Although	 hunting	 or	 harvesting	does	 not	 threaten	 the	mountain	 goat	 population	 in	 the	 Spearhead	 range	 because	hunting	is	not	allowed	in	Garibaldi	Park,	harassment	and	habitat	modification	are	of	the	 utmost	 concern	 to	 BC	 Parks.	 These	 impacts	 can	 lead	 to	 three	 responses	 by	wildlife.	 First,	 the	 animal	 may	 alter	 its	 behavior.	 This	 could	 be	 anything	 from	habituation	to	movement	due	to	disturbance.	Second,	the	animal	may	be	displaced	permanently	 to	 a	 new	 habitat	 or	 from	 the	 population.	 Third,	 the	 impact	 may	ultimately	 lead	 to	 a	 reduction	 in	 reproduction	 or	 survival.	 No	 matter	 what	 the	response,	 these	 impacts	 may	 result	 in	 a	 change	 in	 the	 genetic	 diversity	 and	 the	structure	of	the	population	(Markegard,	2014).		Multiple	 environmental	 factors	 affect	 the	 reaction	 of	 animals	 when	 encountering	recreationists.	 	 While	 resource	 scarcity	 and	 lack	 of	 alternative	 sites	 may	 explain	some	 apparent	 ‘‘habituation’’	 (Stankowich,	 2008),	 ungulates	 also	 assign	 different	levels	 of	 risk	 to	 different	 types	 of	 predatory	 threat	 and	 disturbance.	 In	 general,	humans	 on	 foot,	 diverging	 from	 trails,	 are	 the	 most	 disturbing	 and	 are	 more	intrusive	 for	ungulates	 than	humans	on	horseback,	on	bicycles,	or	observing	 from	cars	 due	 to	 the	 higher	 threat	 level	 of	 direct	 interaction	 (Stankowich,	 2008).			 9However,	 when	 animals	 are	 under	 the	 influence	 of	 two	 or	 more	 factors	simultaneously,	these	factors	may	not	be	additive	in	their	effects	on	flight	responses	and	 responses	 may	 depend	 on	 the	 multiplicative	 or	 dynamic	 effects	 of	 multiple	factors.	 These	 factors	 can	 be	 broken	 down	 into	 categories:	 (1)	 Biological	 factors	(e.g.,	 approacher	 behavior,	 group	 size,	 sex,	 habitat),	 (2)	 Disturbance	 types	 (e.g.,	humans,	automobiles,	and	aircraft),	and	(3)	Experience	with	humans	(e.g.,	hunting	status	and	human	activity	level).	For	example,	when	approached,	ungulates	in	more	open	 habitats	 fled	 more	 readily	 than	 individuals	 in	 closed,	 wooded	 habitats	(Stankowich,	2008).		Human	 disturbance	 can	 lead	 to	 negative	 impacts	 that	 include	 energy	 costs	 from	increased	 stress	 levels,	 decreased	 foraging	 time	 and	 increased	 movement	 due	 to	flight	 and	 avoidance.	 Reproductive	 costs	 and	 displacement	 are	 other	 negative	consequences	of	human	disturbance	(Knight	&	Cole,	1991).		2.3.1 Proximity 	Wildlife	 exhibit	 a	 strong	 response	 to	 humans	 that	 approach	 them	 directly	 off	designated	trails	(Moen,	Whittemore,	&	Buxton,	1982;	Knight	&	Cole,	1995).	When	studying	 birds,	 Karp	 and	 Guevara	 (2011)	 discovered	 that	 even	 average	 levels	 of	conversational	 noise	 could	 have	 an	 impact	 on	 wildlife	 behavior;	 and	 Stankowich	found	that	when	approachers	behaved	in	a	more	threatening	manner,	ungulates	fled	at	 greater	 distances	 (Stankowich,	 2008)	 potentially	 leading	 to	 expending	significantly	more	energy.	Therefore,	keeping	 recreationists	on	 trail	 and	 relatively	quiet	will	be	very	 important	 for	 the	health	of	 the	mountain	goats.	Flight	 initiation	distance	(FID),	the	distance	between	the	predator	and	prey	when	the	prey	flees,	and	other	 distance	 metrics,	 are	 accurate	 indices	 of	 fear	 in	 animals	 (Miller,	 Garner,	 &	Mench,	 2006)	 and	 are	 useful	 in	 the	 assessment	 of	 an	 animal’s	 welfare	 state	(Stankowich,	 2008).	 It	 is	 expected	 that	 larger	ungulate	 groups	will	 have	 a	 greater	FID	 because	 the	 presence	 of	 a	 particularly	wary	 animal	 is	more	 likely	 in	 a	 larger			 10group,	 and	 typically	 the	 movements	 of	 the	 most	 wary	 group	 member	 have	 a	contagious	effect	on	the	rest	of	the	group	(Stankowich,	2008);	the	simple	detection	of	 a	 disturbance	 can	 induce	 increased	 alertness	 and	 heart	 rate.	 The	 factors	 that	influence	flight	decisions	and	the	disturbance	level	of	a	particular	stimulus	can	vary	both	 spatially	 (with	 population	 and	 human	 density	 differences)	 and	 temporally	(with	life	history	and	seasonal	differences	in	vulnerability).		Some	 researchers	 suggest	 that	 behavioral	measurements	 like	 FID	may	 not	 be	 the	most	accurate	indicator	of	human	disturbance	on	wildlife	because	populations	differ	in	 the	 quality	 of	 the	 disturbance	 site	 and	 the	 availability	 of	 alternative	 sites.	 For	example,	animals	 living	 in	an	area	where	there	are	no	alternative	sites	 to	move	to	when	disturbed,	will,	all	else	being	equal,	allow	closer	approach	than	animals	from	an	area	with	alternative	sites	(Stankowich,	2008).	It	is	very	important	that	the	goats	have	their	winter	habitat	available	without	disturbance,	so	they	do	not	have	to	move	to	 different	 sites.	 The	 goats	will	weigh	 these	 tradeoffs	when	 they	 react	 to	 human	disturbance,	so	knowing	about	their	home	ranges	and	the	availability	of	alternative	sites	will	be	very	important	to	assess	the	goats’	behaviour.		One	 aspect	 of	 location	 that	 could	 affect	 the	 population	 is	 elevation.	 Evidence	suggests	that	wildlife	often	show	more	pronounced	responses	to	activities	that	are	occurring	 above	 them	 (Taylor	 &	 Knight,	 2003);	 it	 seems	 they	 perceive	 this	 as	 a	greater	 threat	 to	 their	 safety	 and	 ability	 to	 escape.	 It	 is	 likely	 that	 the	mountain	goats	will	be	on	higher	terrain	than	the	recreationist	naturally	because	that	is	where	they	 are	 comfortable	but	 it	 is	 important	 to	note	 that	 this	may	 affect	 their	 level	 of	perceived	threat.			2.3.2 Feeding  	Mountain	 goats	 have	 versatile	 and	 varied	diets,	 feeding	 on	 grasses,	 herbs,	 sedges,	ferns,	lichens,	shrubs	or	whatever	is	available	in	barren,	elevated	rock‐faces	during			 11very	low	temperatures	(Morris,	2006).	This	flexibility	in	sources	of	nutrition	is	key	to	 allowing	 mountain	 goats	 to	 consume	 as	 much	 food	 and	 nutrients	 as	 possible.	Winter	 habitat	 is	 restricted	 to	 limited	 patches	 of	 their	 territory.	 In	 the	 winter,	mountain	 goats	 use	 less	 than	 14%	 of	 their	 home	 range,	 and	 their	 movement	 is	severely	 limited	 to	 prevent	 energy	 loss	 (Poole,	 Stuart‐Smith,	 &	 Teske,	 2009).		Foraging	 is	 so	 restricted,	 that	 mountain	 goats	 are	 thought	 to	 endure	 a	 period	 of	severe	nutritional	depletion	(Wilson	&	Shackleton,	2001).	Spring	foraging,	therefore,	is	 an	 essential	 requirement	 for	 the	 preparation	 of	 spring	 developments,	 such	 as	kidding	 and	 migration	 to	 upper	 elevations.	 These	 crucial	 habitats	 need	 to	 be	considered	 when	 the	 huts	 are	 implemented	 so	 the	 goats	 can	 have	 access	 to	 the	proper	nutrition	year	round.		Research	has	shown	that	animals	 feeding	 in	groups	 tend	 to	respond	 to	humans	at	greater	distances	and	are	less	vulnerable	to	approaching	threats	than	animals	that	are	 alone	 (Markegard,	 2014)	 but	 if	 harassment	 of	 big	 game	 animals	 occur	 while	eating,	 it	 could	 result	 in	 inefficient	 foraging	 patterns	 (Boyle	 &	 Samson,	 1985).	 As	well	as	feeding	better	in	a	group,	mountain	goats	are	more	likely	to	sleep	and	forage	when	no	interaction	with	humans	is	occurring.	In	other	words,	they	are	more	likely	to	be	conserving	or	obtaining	energy	when	humans	are	not	disturbing	them.	On	the	other	hand,	when	people	are	present	and	noticing	the	goats,	they	are	more	likely	to	be	 expending	 energy	 by	 being	 alert,	 walking	 or	 moving	 towards	 or	 away	 from	people.	These	results	indicate	that	even	mountain	goats	that	are	highly	desensitized	to	 recreationists,	 exhibit	 behaviors	 that	 indicate	 stress	 during	 interactions	 more	frequently	than	when	no	interaction	is	occurring	(Markegard,	2014).	When	animals	are	in	poor	condition,	there	is	a	greater	cost	of	leaving	a	site	where	food	is	present,	resulting	 in	 decreased	 flight	 distances.	 There	 also	 may	 be	 a	 link	 between	 food	abundance	at	a	site	and	body	condition.	Animals	in	good	condition	have	the	ability	to	 flee	 at	 greater	 distances	 regardless	 of	 food	 abundance,	 but	 animals	 in	 poor	condition	 may	 be	 more	 sensitive	 to	 food	 abundance,	 allowing	 recreationist	 or	predators	to	get	closer	when	food	is	present	(Stankowich,	2008).			 12	In	 Glacier	 National	 Park	 the	 mountain	 goats	 appear	 to	 have	 made	 a	 connection	between	the	trail	and	salt,	as	they	remain	very	close	to	the	trail	and	sometimes	lick	minerals	left	behind	by	visitors	(Markegard,	2014).	The	minerals	and	elements	they	ingest	from	the	naturally	occurring	sites,	such	as	calcium,	sodium	and	sulphate,	help	supplement	 nutritional	 deficiencies,	 mitigate	 against	 intestinal	 complications	resulting	 from	the	 transition	of	winter	 to	spring	 forage,	and	supplement	 inorganic	compounds	vital	to	bodily	functions,	such	as	lactating	in	females	(Ayotte,	Parker,	&	Gillingham,	2008).	Goats	from	certain	populations	have	been	known	to	travel	great	distances	(up	to	17km)	to	visit	licks	up	to	nine	times	in	a	year,	and	spend	an	annual	average	of	approximately	1.5	days	licking	(Poole,	Stuart‐Smith,	&	Teske,	2009).	This	requires	 the	 abandonment	 of	 escape	 terrain	 and	 an	 increased	 risk	 of	 visibility	possibly	leading	to	predation	to	access	licks	generally	occurring	at	lower	elevations.		2.3.3 Communication Interruption  	Social	 groups	 benefit	 by	 producing	 alarm	 calls	 to	warn	 of	 approaching	 predators	and	contact	calls	to	maintain	group	cohesion	as	well	as	reproductive	and	territorial	messages	 that	 allow	 the	 network	 to	 operate	 successfully	 (Barber,	 Crooks,	 &	Fristrup,	2009).	Acoustic	masking,	the	process	by	which	the	threshold	of	detection	for	 a	 sound	 is	 increased	 by	 the	 presence	 of	 the	 aggregate	 of	 other	 sounds,	 will	reduce	 the	 number	 of	 individuals	 that	 comprise	 these	 crucial	 communication	networks	 and	 have	 unknown	 consequences	 for	 reproductive	 processes	 (ibid).	Additionally,	vocalizing	and	following	another	goat,	which	were	typically	exhibited	by	 kids	 that	 were	 trying	 to	 find	 or	 stay	 near	 their	 mother,	 were	 observed	more	frequently	 during	 interactions	with	 humans	 in	 Glacier	 National	 Park	 (Markegard,	2014).	A	reduction	in	signal	transmission	distance	created	by	anthropogenic	noise	might	decrease	the	effectiveness	of	these	social	networks.	The	inability	to	hear	just	one	 of	 the	 alarm	 calling	 individuals	 can	 result	 in	 animals	 underestimating	 the	urgency	of	their	response.			 13	2.3.4 Reproduction and Population Viability  	Human	disturbances	can	be	particularly	detrimental	during	certain	critical	periods	of	an	animal’s	 life	or	at	 times	of	year	when	animals	are	 in	poor	condition	or	more	vulnerable	to	injury.	A	goat’s	ability	to	reproduce	could	be	significantly	affected	by	the	availability	of	food	and	the	correct	habitat	for	nannies	to	deliver	kids.	It	is	more	likely	that	a	healthy	nanny	will	give	birth	to	a	healthy	kid.	One	significant	effect	of	human	disturbance,	aside	from	escape	injury,	is	nanny/kid	separation,	which	leads	to	reduced	survival	of	orphaned	kids	(Nelson,	2001).		Goats	typically	have	low	reproductive	rates	to	begin	with	and	females	do	not	usually	reproduce	before	the	age	of	three	(Festa‐Bianchet	&	Urquhart,	1994).	Juveniles	also	suffer	 the	highest	mortality	 rates,	 as	nearly	half	 of	 them	do	not	 survive	 their	 first	year,	when	faced	with	winter	starvation	and	a	constant	threat	of	missing	a	step	or	avalanches	and	ice	or	rockslides	(Morris,	2006).	In	addition	to	the	natural	elements	that	 threaten	 the	 kids’	 survival,	 stress	 can	 lead	 to	 decreased	 fitness	 in	 animals,	which	in	turn	could	lead	to	poor	reproduction.	A	study	in	Colorado	showed	that	elk	exposed	to	human	induced	disturbance	during	calving	season,	reproduced	7%	less	than	those	that	were	left	alone	(Phillips	&	Alldredge,	2000).	2.4 Suggested Management Recommendations 	 Keep	recreationists	on	trail	and	quiet.	This	will	be	very	beneficial	for	the	health	of	the	mountain	goats;		 Provide	 ample	 opportunities	 to	 educate	 recreationists	 about	 goat	sensitivity	and	disturbance;	 The	huts	should	not	be	located	directly	above	important	goat	habitat;	and	 Compliance	with	the	no	dogs	rule	should	be	strongly	enforced.	 					 14		2.5 Conclusion 		In	attempt	to	mitigate	the	adverse	affects	on	the	mountain	goats,	BC	Parks	has	done	their	best	 to	understand	the	existing	population	 in	the	Spearhead	range.	Available	information	 on	 mountain	 goats	 in	 the	 Spearhead	 range,	 including	 the	 results	 of	population	assessments	conducted	by	helicopter,	was	summarized	in	Appendix	1	of	the	Garibaldi	Park	Management	Plan	Amendment	for	the	Spearhead	Area	(BC	Parks,	2014),	and	an	additional	helicopter	survey	was	conducted	in	October	2014.			It	 is	 important	 that	 wildlife	 education	 be	 made	 available	 for	 all	 sections	 of	 the	proposed	hut	system,	both	where	the	huts	and	trails	will	be	located,	as	well	as	near	the	goat	habitats.	This	will	help	contribute	to	awareness	of	the	risks	to	the	goats	and	the	extent	of	their	habitat	use	(Nelson,	2001).			In	circumstances	where	park	managers	believe	that	 it	 is	worthwhile	for	visitors	to	be	exposed	to	wildlife	in	their	parks,	they	need	to	provide	for	appropriate	viewing	opportunities	and	for	dissemination	of	sufficient	information.	This	could	encourage	observers'	 curiosity,	 causing	 them	 to	 look	more	 carefully	at	what	 they	 see,	 and	 to	seek	additional	knowledge	(Pedevillano	&	Wright,	1987).	However,	specific	viewing	opportunities	are	not	 recommended	 for	 the	Spearhead	Range,	as	 the	goats	 should	remain	as	inconspicuous	and	undisturbed	as	possible.			Some	 studies	 have	 found	 that	 habituation	 to	 even	 low	 impact,	 non‐consumptive,	human	stressors	(e.g.,	hiking	and	mountain	biking)	may	take	many	years	or	never	occur	 at	 all	 (Stankowich,	 2008).	 However,	 apparent	 habituation	 may	 actually	indicate	that	animals	are	food	or	habitat	limited	and	thus	appear	to	tolerate	humans,	even	though	this	may	still	be	causing	stress.	In	order	to	avoid	the	adverse	affects	on			 15the	 existing	 mountain	 goat	 population	 in	 the	 Spearhead	 Range,	 all	 the	aforementioned	factors	of	human	disturbance	need	to	be	considered,	most	of	which	were	visual	cues	causing	disturbance.	I	was	not	able	to	find	any	studies	on	sight	and	smell	impacts	from	human	disturbance.	I	followed	up	on	this	during	the	interviews	with	experts	in	the	next	phase	of	the	study.		3.0	Research	Methodology		In	 order	 to	 successfully	 analyze	 the	 components	 of	 the	 aforementioned	 research	objective,	 both	 qualitative	 and	 quantitative	 methods	 were	 used.	 The	 following	outlines	how	data	was	collected	throughout	the	study.			3.1	Expert	Interviews		The	literature	provides	a	strong	base	to	identify	the	threat	level	of	the	disturbances	to	 the	 goats.	 However,	 during	 the	 expert	 interviews	 with	 biologists	 and	conservationists	 I	 collected	additional	 information	about	disturbances	 and	 threats	specific	to	mountain	goat	populations	in	North	America.	BC	Parks	has	worked	with	many	experts	 on	 this	project	 already	 so	 I	 identified	different	 experts	 to	 interview	when	performing	my	literature	review.	I	 looked	into	contacting	experts	who	study	where	mountain	 goats	 are	 found	 elsewhere	 in	 North	 America	 (Yukon,	 Northwest	Territories,	Alaska,	Alberta,	Washington,	Montana	and	Wyoming).		These	interviews	took	place	over	the	phone,	email	and	in	person	and	were	loosely	structured	as	each	participant’s	area	of	expertise	differed.	I	based	the	interviews	on	some	 broad	 research	 questions	 (Appendix	 A)	 and	 then	 allowed	 the	 interviews	 to	move	from	there	based	on	the	experts’	experiences	with	mountain	goats	and	other	ungulates.	The	interviews	ranged	from	two	minutes	to	thirty	minutes	depending	on	the	availability	of	the	expert.				 16	I	 interacted	 with	 three	 experts	 over	 email	 exclusively,	 Dr.	 Steeve	 Côté,	 Dr.	 Ted	Stankowich	and	Dr.	Gerry	Keryzk.	Dr.	Côté	is	a	biology	Professor	at	Laval	University	researching	 behavioural	 ecology	 of	 large	 mammals,	 evolution	 of	 life‐history	strategies,	 wildlife	 management,	 conservation	 biology	 and	 population	 genetics.	More	 specifically,	 he’s	 been	 working	 on	 a	 project	 studying	 the	 ecology	 and	behaviour	 of	 mountain	 goats	 in	 Alberta,	 which	 investigates	 the	 factors	 affecting	individual	variations	 in	reproductive	success	and	population	dynamics	(Université	Laval,	2015).		Dr.	Stankowich	is	the	Principal	Investigator	at	The	Stankowich	Lab	at	California	State	University.	His	research	interests	include	the	evolution,	ecology,	and	behavior	 of	 predator‐prey	 interactions	 and	 ungulate	 flight	 responses	 to	 human	disturbance	(The	Stankowich	Lab,	N.D.).	Dr.	Kuzyk	is	an	ungulate	specialist	working	at	the	British	Columbia	Ministry	of	Forest,	Lands	and	Natural	Resource	Operations.	He	 was	 the	 chair	 of	 the	 Mountain	 Goat	 Management	 Team	 in	 2010	 when	 they	released	 the	 Management	 Plan	 for	 the	 Mountain	 Goat	 (Oreamnos	americanus)	 in	British	Columbia.		I	 conducted	 one	 interview	 by	 phone	 with	 Kim	 Poole,	 owner	 of	 Aurora	 Wildlife	Research.	His	work	 focuses	on	wildlife	 research	and	management,	wildlife	habitat	management	and	assessment,	and	assessment,	mitigation	and	monitoring	of	effects	of	developments	on	wildlife.	He	has	performed	aerial	assessments,	habitat	selection	and	abundance	assessments,	and	movement	migration	and	home	range	analysis	of	the	mountain	goat	populations	in	the	Kootenays	(Aurora	Wildlife	Research,	2015).			The	 final	 interview	 I	 conducted	was	 in	person,	with	Dr.	Robin	Naidoo.	Dr.	Naidoo	has	worked	with	Conservation	Science	Program	of	World	Wildlife	Fund	since	2004	and	 is	 an	 adjunct	 professor	 at	 the	 Institute	 for	 Resources,	 Environment	 and	Sustainability	at	 the	University	of	British	Columbia.	His	current	research	 is	 largely	focused	 on	 understanding	 the	 ecology,	 economics,	 and	 conservation	 of	wildlife	 in			 17Namibia's	 Community‐Based	 Natural	 Resources	 Management	 program	 (World	Wildlife	Fund,	2015).			3.2 Participatory Mapping 	In	order	 to	gain	a	concrete	understanding	of	 the	users	of	 the	Spearhead	area,	and	their	interactions	with	mountain	goats,	I	organized	a	participatory	mapping	exercise	with	Garibaldi	and	Whistler	park	users	regarding	both	summer	and	winter	uses.	 I	attended	meetings	facilitated	by	the	British	Columbia	Mountaineering	Club	(BCMC)	and	the	Alpine	Club	of	Canada	(ACC).	Approximately	70	and	20	people	attended	the	meetings	respectively.	At	both	meetings	I	brought	large	maps	of	the	study	area	for	both	summer	and	winter,	including	the	proposed	hut	locations,	the	Spearhead	study	area	and	the	goat	winter	range	(Appendices	B	and	C).	These	maps	were	produced	using	 Shapefiles	 from	 BC	 Parks	 and	 the	 hut	 locations	 from	 the	 ACC.	 They	 were	created	using	ESRI	ArcGIS	software.			The	BCMC	meeting	was	hosted	at	the	Anza	Club	in	Vancouver	on	Tuesday,	June	9th	at	 7:30pm.	 The	 gathering	 was	 social	 and	 included	 brief	 presentations	 from	members.	 The	 ACC	 meeting	 was	 held	 at	 the	 Steel	 Toad	 Brewery	 at	 7:30pm	 on	Tuesday,	 June	 23rd.	 There	 were	 three	 people	 who	 were	 in	 attendance	 at	 both	meetings.	 I	 was	 introduced	 at	 the	 beginning	 of	 both	 evenings	 and	 asked	 the	attendees	 to	 view	 the	maps	 I	 brought	 and	 to	mark	where	 they	 frequented	 in	 the	area,	what	time	of	year	and	if	they	have	seen	mountain	goats.			Although	not	necessarily	a	representative	sample	of	the	users,	the	members	of	the	BCMC	 and	 the	 ACC	 provide	 valuable	 insight	 into	 the	 area	 as	 they	 have	 shown	extensive	use	of	 the	Spearhead	study	area.	The	mapping	participants	ranged	 from	new	users	of	the	area	to	people	who	had	been	using	the	area	for	60	years.	Most,	if	not	 all,	 of	 the	 participants	 had	 only	 recreated	 using	 non‐motorized	 modes	 of			 18transportation:	 hiking	 and	 skiing.	 The	 data	 collected	 through	 this	 exercise	 was	intended	to	provide	a	baseline	assessment	that	could	be	used	once	the	huts	are	 in	place	to	assess	the	potential	avoidance	behaviour	of	the	mountain	goats.			3.3	Discussions	with	BC	Parks		This	assessment	was	initiated	to	address	management	questions	for	BC	Parks,	who	provided	some	baseline	data	for	the	mountain	goat	population	occupying	the	Spearhead	Range,	including	Appendix	1	of	the	Garibaldi	Management	Plan	Amendment	(BC	Parks,	2014).	They	gave	me	access	to	the	maps	of	an	aerial	survey	performed	in	October	2014,	during	which	seven	goats	were	spotted	around	the	hut	locations.			4.0	Results		4.1	Expert	Interviews		The	interviews	yielded	insightful	data	that	is	relevant	to	non‐motorized	recreation	and	 the	 potential	 threat	 it	 poses	 to	 the	 existing	mountain	 goat	 population	 in	 the	Spearhead	study	area.	The	 interviews	have	been	broken	down	into	topics	 that	are	similar	to	the	ones	in	the	literature	review:	human	disturbance	impacts,	proximity,	feeding,	reproduction	and	population	viability,	seasonality,	and	management.		4.1.1 Human Disturbance Impacts 	As	found	in	the	literature	review,	most	of	the	anthropogenic	disturbance	associated	with	the	huts	will	be	by	sight,	and	eventually	sound	(Personal	Communication	with	Steeve	Côté,	May	5,	2015).	BC	Parks	 raised	questions	 that	not	only	could	 the	huts	affect	those	senses,	but	possibly	scent	as	well.	Two	of	the	experts	interviewed	said			 19that	it	is	unlikely	the	smell	would	be	an	issue	because	goats	are	not	impacted	by	the	scent	 of	 recreationists	 (ibid;	 Personal	 Communication	 with	 Kim	 Poole,	 May	 15,	2015).			 4.1.2 Proximity 	Ungulates	 become	 habituated	 to	 humans	 in	 areas	 where	 they	 frequently	 contact	humans	 in	 a	 non‐threatening	 setting	 and	 in	 close	 proximity	 (Personal	Communication	with	Ted	Stankowich,	May	20,	2015;	Personal	Communication	with	Steeve	 Côté,	 May	 5,	 2015).	 This	 typically	 happens	 in	 city	 parks,	 suburban	neighborhoods,	etc.,	when	they	feed	and	live	around	human	roads	and	homes.	They	will	 also	 habituate	 in	 larger	 state	 and	 national	 parks	 to	 humans	 in	 cars	 and	 on	trails.		A	25‐year	study	conducted	by	Dr.	Côté	at	a	site	in	Alberta,	showed	that	after	being	exposed	to	three	to	six	people	on	foot	daily	for	five	months	a	year,	there	is	still	no	sign	of	habituation	(Personal	Communication	with	Steeve	Côté,	May	5,	2015).	It	seems	as	 though	as	 long	as	humans	 remain	 in	 the	 context	 in	which	 they	are	non‐threatening,	 the	 ungulates	 will	 treat	 them	 with	 less	 interest	 (Personal	Communication	with	Ted	Stankowich,	May	20,	2015).			However,	the	moment	someone	steps	off	a	trail,	that	human	is	out	of	context	and	the	animal	will	 take	 notice	 and	 often	 flee	 quickly	 (ibid).	 Similarly,	 goats	will	walk	 on	trail	if	there	are	no	people	around	(Personal	Communication	with	Steeve	Côté,	May	5,	2015).	This	emphasizes	the	levels	of	human	interaction	threat	anticipated	by	the	goats.	Skiers,	limited	by	terrain,	have	more	predictable	movements	than	hikers,	and	could	be	perceived	as	a	lesser	threat	than	disruptive	hikers,	who	could	approach	or	harass	 the	 goats	 (Personal	 Communication	with	 Ted	 Stankowich,	 May	 20,	 2015).	However,	this	depends	critically	on	if	there	is	active	hunting	by	humans	in	the	area	(ibid).	There	is	no	hunting	in	Garibaldi	Park,	which	means	that	the	goats	may	be	less	likely	to	perceive	humans	as	a	threat.					 20				4.1.3 Feeding 	Goat’s	attraction	to	salts	will	depend	on	what	they	have	been	exposed	to	in	the	past		(Personal	Communication	with	Kim	Poole,	May	15,	2015).	 	Use	of	 licks	by	 coastal	animals	 is	 less	 than	 that	of	 interior	populations,	possibly	due	 to	different	geology.	There	 are	 no	 mineral	 licks	 currently	 known	 on	 the	 coast	 (Mountain	 Goat	Management	 Team,	 2010)	 therefore,	 the	 goats	 derive	 the	 minerals	 elsewhere	 in	their	 habitat,	 such	 as	 the	 soil	 or	 vegetation	 (Personal	 Communication	 with	 Kim	Poole,	May	15,	2015).			There	have	been	instances	where	deer	have	been	attracted	to	campsites	due	to	their	attraction	 to	 urine,	 and	 it	 is	 possible	 that	 coastal	 goats	 could	 have	 the	 same	attraction	 (Personal	 Communication	 with	 Kim	 Poole,	 May	 15,	 2015).	 This	phenomenon	has	been	observed	with	mountain	goats	have	been	attracted	to	urine	in	 campsites	 in	 the	 Interior	 (Personal	Communication	with	 Joanna	Hirner,	August	24,	2015).	This	 is	 likely	 to	be	 less	of	an	 issue	on	 the	coast	due	 to	 the	 fact	 that	 the	goat	 population	 does	 not	 necessarily	 need	 the	 specific	 minerals	 from	 salt	 licks.	However,	it	still	may	be	possible	that	over	the	years	the	goats	could	be	attracted	to	the	urine	expelled	from	the	huts	once	they	have	found	it	(Personal	Communication	with	Steeve	Côté,	May	5,	2015).		4.1.4 Reproduction and Population Viability 	Intrusive	 human	 disturbance	 can	 affect	 reproduction	 if	 the	 goats	 do	 not	 have	 a	refuge	for	breeding	(Personal	Communication	with	Ted	Stankowich,	May	20,	2015).	As	 seen	 in	 the	 literature	 review,	 goats	 have	 a	 strong	 aversion	 to	 helicopters	 and			 21other	 motorized	 disturbance.	 However,	 current	 studies	 suggest	 they	 may	 be	 less	affected	by	air	disturbance	than	recreational	disturbances	on	the	ground	(Personal	Communication	with	Kim	Poole,	May	15,	2015).	The	goat’s	reaction	will	be	based	on	the	threat	of	interaction,	especially	in	their	escape	terrain.	Something	on	the	ground	could	be	a	predator	such	as	wolf,	a	cougar,	or	a	bear.	So	it	is	possible	that	hiking	and	skiing	could	have	impacts	over	a	smaller	area	than	a	helicopter	or	heli‐ski	operation,	but	could	still	have	a	dramatic	effect	on	distribution	of	animals	(ibid).			4.1.5 Seasonality  	As	previously	noted,	potential	 impacts	of	 recreation	 in	 the	Spearhead	area	 can	be	divided	 into	 two	main	 seasons:	 the	winter/skiing	 season	 and	 the	 summer/hiking	season.	Information	in	the	literature	and	from	experts	has	repeatedly	indicated,	that	displacing	goats	from	their	preferred	winter	range	may	cause	stress	that	could	have	population	 level	 impacts.	 During	 the	months	 of	 December,	 January	 and	 February,	goats	 have	 been	 observed	 staying	 within	 the	 same	 150	 meter	 range	 (Personal	Communication	with	Kim	Poole,	May	15,	2015).	This	is	the	most	important	habitat	to	keep	secure	from	recreationist.	Being	disturbed	and	having	to	move	could	lead	to	expending	too	much	energy,	which	could	harm	the	goats.			At	 kidding	 time,	 the	 goats	 also	 use	 the	 rugged	 terrain	 that	 hikers	 or	 skiers	 have	trouble	 accessing,	 and	 after	 they	 have	 their	 kids,	 they	 migrate	 to	 the	 meadows,	usually	within	500	meters	of	their	escape	terrain	(ibid).	Although	spring	range	may	be	relatively	small,	there	is	more	available	habitat	in	the	spring	and	summer	than	in	winter,	 so	 goats	would	 require	 less	 energy	 to	move	 from	 one	 place	 to	 the	 next	 if	disturbed.			Therefore,	the	degree	of	impact	is	potentially	less	about	the	location	of	the	huts	and	more	 about	 how	 recreationists	 are	 accessing	 the	 huts	 and	 how	 people	 are	dispersing	 (Personal	 Communication	 with	 Kim	 Poole,	 May	 15,	 2015).	 Keeping			 22people	away	from	these	sensitive	habitats,	especially	in	the	winter,	will	have	a	lot	to	do	with	education	afforded	to	the	area’s	users.			4.1.6 Management  	In	terms	of	population	management,	Dr.	Naidoo	suggested	it	would	be	interesting	to	look	at	the	solution	from	three	different	levels.			1. From	an	individual	 level:	 to	observe	changes	in	movement	or	behavior	that	could	be	the	result	of	avoidance	both	before	and	after	the	proposed	huts	are	installed;	2. From	 a	 population	 level:	 to	 compare	 the	 shape,	 configuration,	 size	 and	location	of	home	range	change	once	the	proposed	huts	are	built;	and	3. From	a	species	level:	to	assess	presence/absence	and	abundance	at	a	broader	scale.		The	best	way	to	collect	data	on	the	first	two	levels	is	with	satellite	collars	on	animals	within	 the	population.	Mountain	goat	populations,	and	other	ungulates,	have	been	successfully	 monitored	 throughout	 British	 Columbia	 using	 collaring	 technology	(Poole,	 Bachmann,	 &	 Teske,	 2010).	 Collaring	 can	 transmit	 information	 to	 the	researcher	about	both	survival	and	mortality,	and	habitat	selection	and	migration.	Researchers	 in	 the	 East	 Kootenays	 successfully	 collared	 both	 male	 and	 female	mountain	 goats	 to	 look	 at	 the	 broad	 population	 dynamics	 and	 the	 difference	 in	habitat	 selection	 between	males	 and	 females	 (Personal	 Communication	with	 Kim	Poole,	May	15,	2015).		There	 appears	 to	 be	 limited	 options	 to	 monitor	 and	 evaluate	 the	 mountain	 goat	population	within	Garibaldi	Park	due	to	the	lack	of	funding.	The	satellite	collars	are	very	 expensive	 but	would	 be	 useful	 in	 this	 situation	 even	 though	 there	 is	 limited	baseline	pre‐hut	data.	Kim	Poole	has	used	these	collars	often	in	the	Kootenays	and			 23says	 that	 the	 cheapest	 ones,	 which	 only	 send	 two	 or	 three	 signals	 a	 day,	 cost	approximately	$800	to	$900.	In	addition	to	this	fee	there	is	the	price	of	the	capture,	a	possible	satellite	fee,	and	the	cost	of	ongoing	analysis.			If	satellite	collars	are	considered,	it	is	crucial	to	ask	what	kind	of	data	would	be	most	useful	to	collect	before	purchasing	the	activating	the	collars.	When	using	the	collars	in	 the	past,	Kim	Poole	has	designed	 the	objectives	of	 the	study	and	 then	designed	the	technology	to	match	the	objectives.	The	most	basic	collars,	sending	two	or	three	signals	a	day,	are	cheaper,	lighter,	last	longer	and	send	a	signal	if	one	of	the	animals	dies.		This	allows	the	researcher	to	possibly	determine	the	cause	of	death	within	24	hours.	They	show	habitat	selection	in	broad	movements	but	they	are	more	popular	for	 survival	mortality	 type	 studies	 rather	 than	habitat	 selection	 (ibid).	The	 collars	that	 send	 out	 more	 than	 8	 locations	 a	 day	 are	 great	 for	 habitat	 selection	 and	observing	quicker	movements	or	migrations	(ibid).			Even	 though	 this	 may	 be	 the	 most	 effective	 option	 for	 BC	 Parks,	 it	 may	 not	 be	possible	 to	 include	 in	 the	monitoring	and	evaluation	stage	due	 to	 the	expense.	An	alternate	option	would	be	the	use	of	remote	cameras	as	a	tool	for	goat	management	purposes	(Personal	Communication	with	Gerry	Kuzyk,	May	6,	2015).		Citizen	science	could	be	an	effective	alternative	 to	 the	more	expensive	options	 for	monitoring	and	evaluation	once	the	huts	are	in	place	(Personal	Communication	with	Robin	 Naidoo,	 May	 20,	 2015).	 Proposing	 and	 implementing	 a	 user	 based	management	system	may	be	the	best	way	to	ensure	there	is	ongoing	observation	of	the	goat	population	in	the	Spearhead	Range.			4.2 Participatory Mapping Exercise  		Inviting	users	of	the	area	to	indicate	where	they	frequent	and	where	they	have	seen	goats	 in	 the	 past,	 seemed	 like	 a	 great	way	 to	 provide	 a	 baseline	 of	 presence	 and			 24distribution	data	in	the	study	area.	However,	conversation	with	the	users	indicated	that	the	goats	were	more	elusive	to	hikers	and	skiers	than	was	anticipated.	It	is	very	challenging	to	understand	how	goats	and	goat	habitat	(outside	of	winter	range)	are	distributed	within	the	Spearhead	area.			There	 were	 very	 few	 people	 at	 the	 BCMC	 and	 ACC	 meetings	 that	 reported	 ever	seeing	mountain	goats,	even	though	most	of	the	attendees	had	been	hiking	and/or	skiing	 throughout	 the	 study	 area	 for	many	 years.	 The	 users	 highlighted	 the	most	common	routes	through	the	Spearhead	Traverse	for	summer	and	winter.	Within	the	study	 area,	 four	 hikers	 and	 skiers	 had	 seen	 goats	 at	 various	 times	 of	 the	 year	 at	Overlord	Mountain,	 ranging	 from	1965	 to	 2014	 (Figure	 2).	 There	 had	 been	many	goat	sightings	at	Wedgemount	Lake	at	different	times	of	the	year,	but	this	area	falls	outside	of	the	study	area.			 25	Figure	2:	Map	of	Goat	Sightings	Within	the	Spearhead	Study	AreaRusset	Lake	Russet	Lake	Hut	Macbeth	Hut				 265.0 Discussion  	Throughout	 this	 research,	 there	 have	 been	 several	 themes	 regarding	 the	 potential	increase	 in	 non‐motorized	 recreation	 and	 the	 consequences	 of	 interaction	 between	recreationists	 and	 mountain	 goats.	 These	 themes	 include:	 seasonality,	 spring	 forage,	habituation,	indirect	anthropogenic	effects,	and	monitoring	and	evaluation.				5.1 Seasonality  	The	main	concern	raised	is	around	the	availability	of	safe	and	undisturbed	escape	terrain	as	 part	 of	 the	 goat’s	winter	 habitat.	 It	 seems,	 as	 a	 result	 of	 the	mapping	 exercise,	 that	there	is	very	low	threat	of	interaction	between	mountain	goats	and	skiers	in	the	winter.	The	only	place	this	may	be	an	issue	is	around	Overlord	Mountain,	which	is	where	a	small	number	of	backcountry	users	had	reported	seeing	goats	during	winter,	spring	and	 fall.		Overlord	is	located	between	the	proposed	Russet	and	Macbeth	huts,	and	falls	outside	of	the	BC	Parks	estimated	winter	goat	range.	Further	inquiry	into	the	tendency	of	goats	to	use	 this	area	 in	 the	winter	may	be	necessary	 to	understand	how	to	protect	goats	 from	potential	impacts.		5.2 Spring Forage 	Although	winter	habitat	is	thought	to	be	more	important	to	the	goat’s	survival	than	any	other	 seasonal	 habitat,	 there	 still	 needs	 to	 be	 consideration	 for	 the	 spring	 forage.	 The	goats	move	 to	 higher	 elevations	 to	 recover	 from	 their	 lack	 of	 nutrition	 in	 the	winter.	Once	the	snow	melts,	this	nutritional	habitat	becomes	available	through	less	restrictive	access	to	the	goats.	However,	if	the	threat	of	interaction	with	recreationists	in	this	area	is	high,	the	amount	of	nourishment	accessed	by	the	goats	could	be	hampered.						 275.3 Habituation 	Another	 emergent	 theme	was	 that	 although	 goats	may	 appear	 to	 be	 habituated	 to	 the	recreationist,	they	might	just	be	habitat	limited.	Although	the	goats	may	seem	as	though	they	 are	 happily	 coexisting	 with	 humans,	 they	 could	 still	 be	 stressed	 and	 potentially	expending	 energy.	 To	 fully	 understand	 the	 condition	 of	 the	 population,	 indicators	 of	population	“health”	should	be	monitored	very	closely	once	the	huts	have	been	installed.			5.4 Indirect Effects 	While	 it	 is	 believed	 that	 non‐motorized	 recreation	 leaves	 little	 impact,	 there	 are	 still	concerns	 regarding	 habitat	 quality	 after	 it	 has	 been	 exposed	 to	 increased	 recreational	use.	This	study,	and	many	before	 it,	has	aimed	to	understand	and	mitigate	 the	 indirect	effects	of	anthropogenic	use	on	wildlife	populations	 in	heavily	used	recreational	areas.	Any	waste	that	attracts	the	mountain	goats	away	from	their	usual	habitat	could	require	the	mountain	goats	to	expend	energy	to	access	or	avoid	the	waste	and	then	have	to	flee	if	they	 sense	 any	 threat.	 This	 could	 lead	 to	modified	 behavior,	 permanent	 displacement	and	 decreased	 population	 viability.	 In	 this	 case,	 it	 is	 unlikely	 that	 the	 goats	 will	 be	attracted	 to	 garbage	or	human	waste,	 but	 it	 is	possible	 that	 they	 could	be	 attracted	 to	urine	over	time.	This	means	there	should	be	consideration	to	monitor	for	this	potential	attraction	associated	with	users	of	the	Spearhead	huts.		 5.5 Monitoring and Evaluation 	The	 ability	 to	 monitor	 and	 evaluate	 the	 existing	 population	 remains	 a	 challenge.	 If	limited	 finances	 eliminate	 the	 option	 of	 collaring	 and	 use	 of	 remote	 cameras,	 local	knowledge	 could	 be	 used	 as	 an	 alternative	 resource	 for	 better	 understanding	 the	population	 dynamics.	 This	 could	 take	 the	 form	 of	 log	 books	 in	 all	 of	 the	 huts	 where	recreationists	 could	 record	 goat	 sightings.	 Additionally,	 a	 twitter	 handle,	 such	 as	#Spearheadmountaingoat,	would	 be	 searchable	 and	 could	 include	 the	 specific	 location			 28and	image	of	the	goat	(such	as	the	cover	photo).	The	data	collection	for	these	methods	of	recording	 information	would	 be	 significantly	 less	 costly	 and	 less	 time	 consuming	 than	more	advanced	technologies.		6.0 Conclusion and Recommendations 	To	successfully	evaluate	the	effects	of	the	proposed	huts	on	mountain	goats	and	maintain	a	healthy	population,	there	should	be	a	monitoring	and	evaluation	plan	implemented	for	when	 the	huts	have	been	 installed.	This	 should	 include	 recommendations	put	 forth	by	experts,	 case	 studies	 of	 successful	 monitoring	 plans,	 and	 suggestions	 that	 have	 been	mentioned	 in	 the	 literature	 review.	 These	 recommendations	 have	 been	 explained	throughout	this	report,	and	are	summarized	below.	The	following	are	recommendations	for	monitoring	and	implementation	for	consideration	by	BC	Parks	and	the	ACC:		1. Recreationists	should	stay	on	trail	and	keep	quiet:	this	could	include	marking	and	officially	designating	existing	trails	that	are	most	commonly	used	in	the	area,	or	establishing	new	trails	through	areas	least	 likely	to	conflict	with	goat	habitat.	Posting	signs	that	prompt	awareness	about	how	the	goats	could	be	impacted	by	too	much	noise	would	also	be	helpful.			2. Provide	opportunities	 to	educate	 recreationists	about	goat	 sensitivity	and	disturbance:	 this	 would	 require	 posting	 information	 about	 the	 disturbance	impacts	of	humans	on	goats	through	many	avenues	such	as:	signs	at	huts	and	trail	heads,	 a	 backcountry	 newsletter,	 a	 Facebook	 Page,	 and	 dissemination	 of	 a	pamphlet	for	potential	new	users	of	the	area.		3. Strongly	encourage	compliance	with	and	enforce	no	dog	rule	by	signage	and	monitoring	at	trailheads.			4. Consider	collaring	or	use	of	remote	cameras	to	monitor	the	distribution	and	condition	 of	 the	 population:	 before	 choosing	 an	 appropriate	 collar,	 it	 is			 29important	to	specify	what	information	will	be	most	useful	when	the	data	from	the	collars	are	analyzed.		5. Use	local	knowledge	to	collect	presence/absence	and	distribution	data:	this	could	 include	 the	use	of	 logbooks	 in	 the	huts,	 a	Twitter	handle,	 and	a	Facebook	page,	to	monitor	posts	about	goat	sightings.			6. Conduct	 further	assessments	of	 the	Garibaldi	Region	 to	 fully	 comprehend	the	vitality	of	the	current	population:	this	could	be	based	on	the	Upper	Lillooet	River	Mountain	Goat	Inventory	in	July	2013	published	by	the	Ministry	of	Forests,	Lands	 &	 Natural	 Resource	 Operations	 South	 Coast	 Fish	 and	 Wildlife	 Section	(Kelly,	Reynolds,	&	McLean,	2013).		A	useful	method	to	approach	the	management	of	the	huts	and	the	existing	mountain	goat	population	is	to	implement	an	adaptive	management	plan.	Adaptive	management	allows	for	ongoing	improvement	of	policies	that	reflect	an	ecosystem	response	to	certain	programs	(BC	Ministry	of	Forests	and	Range,	2008).	Many	of	the	recommendations	made	throughout	this	report	could	be	integrated	into	an	adaptive	management	framework	and	modified	to	reflect	the	changing	patterns	of	recreational	use	and	the	potential	indirect	habitat	alterations.		 30Acknowledgements  	I	would	like	to	thank	Jordi	Honey‐Rosés	and	Joanna	Hirner	for	supervising	this	study	and	helping	guide	my	work.	I	am	very	grateful	to	all	the	experts	and	members	of	the	Alpine	Club	of	Canada	and	the	BC	Mountaineering	Club	who	took	time	to	talk	to	me	and	share	their	wisdom.	Finally,	thank	you	to	my	friends	and	family	for	their	support.						 			 31Works Cited 	Aurora	Wildlife	Research.	(2015).	Recent	Projects.	Retrieved	July	3,	2015,	from	Aurora	Wildlife	Research:	http://members.shaw.ca/klpoole/recentprojects.htm		Ayotte,	J.,	Parker,	K.,	&	Gillingham,	M.	(2008).	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North	American	Ecotourism	Markets:	Motivations,	Preferences,	and	Destinations.	Journal	of	Travel	Reasearch	,	35	(1),	3‐10.		Wilson,	S.,	&	Shackleton,	D.	(2001).	Backcountry	Recreation	and	Mountain	Goats:	A	Proposed	Research	and	Adaptive	Management	Plan.	Victoria:	BC	Ministry	of	Environment,	Lands	and	Parks.		World	Wildlife	Fund.	(2015).	Robin	Naidoo,	Ph.D.	Retrieved	July	3,	2015,	from	WWF:	https://www.worldwildlife.org/pages/robin‐naidoo‐ph‐d				  		 34Appendix A – Expert Interview Guide Questions  	 Are	mountain	goats	keystone/flagship/umbrella	species?	Why	save	the	mountain	goat?	What	is	their	importance?		 Under	what	conditions	does	habituated	(desensitized)	behavior	exist?	How	long	does	habituation	take	to	appear?	What	affect,	if	any,	would	habituation	have	on	the	mountain	goat	population?		 What	are	the	implications	of	goats	being	attracted	to	salts	on	the	trail?	Good,	bad	or	neutral?		 How	does	non‐motorized	human	disturbance	affect	reproduction	and	population	viability?		 What	senses	require	the	least	stimulation	for	a	negative	response	in	goats?	(ie.	would	smell	elicit	a	negative	response?)		 How	would	the	orientation	of	the	huts	affect	the	goats?	Would	moving	the	huts	slightly	make	a	difference	for	the	goats’	habitats?		 Are	there	any	management	approaches,	other	than	hut	location,	that	you	would	recommend?		 Could	you	recommend	any	ways	to	monitor	the	impacts	on	the	goats	after	the	huts	are	put	in	place?					 35Appendix B – Base Map for Summer Goat Sightings 				 36Appendix C ‐ Base Map for Winter Goat Sightings 		*	Red	dots	indicate	the	proposed	huts,	and	the	black	pen	indicates	the	most	common	area	for	the	users	of	the	Spearhead	Traverse	as	marked	by	the	users	

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