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Ecological Framework of Canada
Ecoregions of Canada


This ecoregion covers the Shaler Mountains in central Victoria Island and is characterized by a 40-60% vegetative cover mixed with exposed bedrock materials. The mean annual temperature is approximately -15.5°C with a summer mean of 1°C and a winter mean of -29.5°C. The mean annual precipitation ranges 100-200 mm. This ecoregion is classified as having a mid-arctic ecoclimate. Tundra vegetation includes purple saxifrage, Dryas spp., and arctic willow, along with alpine foxtail, wood rush, and other saxifrage. Wet areas have a continuous cover of sedge, cottongrass, saxifrage, and moss. The Shaler Mountains dissect Victoria Island and are composed of late Proterozoic stratified rocks intruded by gabbro sills that form cuestas and are capped by flat-lying volcanic rocks. The centre part of the mountains reaches about 760 m asl. Turbic Cryosols are the dominant soils, developed on undulating to steeply sloping glacial deposits, and some bare bedrock is apparent. Continuous, low ice content permafrost occurs throughout the ecoregion. Characteristic wildlife includes caribou, polar bear, muskox, arctic hare, arctic fox, snowy owl, other raptors, seal, whale, walrus, seabirds, and waterfowl. Land uses are limited to trapping and hunting.

This ecoregion is part of the Northern Arctic ecozone.