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Ecological Framework of Canada
Ecoregions of Canada


This ecoregion covers the central section of the Rocky Mountains of east-central British Columbia. The ecoregion takes in a portion of the Rocky Mountain Foothills to the east and the Hart Ranges and southern Muskwa Ranges in its western half. The mean annual temperature for the area is approximately 1.5°C with a summer mean of 12°C and a winter mean of -10°C. Mean annual precipitation ranges 500-700 mm with the highest values occurring in the south. Low-elevation forest cover is predominantly mixed species with lodgepole pine, trembling aspen, and white and black spruce. The subalpine section is characterized by forests of lodgepole pine, Engelmann spruce, and alpine fir. Alpine communities are usually composed of low-growing heather, shrubs, and grasses. The Rocky Mountains in the western section of the ecoregion are relatively subdued with summits ranging up to 2700 m asl. The foothills, composed of linear ridges and hills of Jurassic and Cretaceous sediments, rise abruptly above the plains of the prairies to the east. Gray Luvisolic, Dystric Brunisolic, and Podzolic soils developed on irregular, steeply-sloping colluvium and morainal blankets are dominant in the region. Sporadic discontinuous permafrost occurs throughout the ecoregion at high elevation. Characteristic wildlife includes wolverine, grizzly and black bear, moose, mountain goat, caribou, wolf, elk, mule deer, and ruffed grouse. Forestry, hunting, recreation, and coal mining are important land uses. There are no major communities in the ecoregion.

This ecoregion is part of the Montane Cordillera ecozone.