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Ecological Framework of Canada
Ecoregions of Canada

NORTHERN ALBERTA UPLANDS

This ecoregion includes the flat-topped Caribou Mountains in northern Alberta (67) and the Cameron Hills uplands that span the border with British Columbia and the Northwest Territories (65). Composed of Cretaceous shales, the uplands rise some 400-500 m above the surrounding lowlands with steep scarps on their eastern sides. The ecoregion is marked by cool summers and very cold winters. The mean annual temperature ranges from -2°C to -2.5°C. The mean summer temperature ranges from 13°C to 14°C, and the mean winter temperature  from -18°C to -20°C. The mean annual precipitation ranges 350-500 mm. The ecoregion is classified as having a subhumid high boreal ecoclimate. Between 50-70% of the ecoregion is covered by wetlands. Undulating to rolling morainal surfaces are covered with organic deposits supporting open stands of stunted black spruce and some birch and shrubs. Sporadic discontinuous permafrost with low ice content is common in these Organic Cryosolic soils. Upland slopes free of organic blankets are mainly loamy glacial till supporting a white spruce, balsam fir, and aspen mixedwood forest. Exposed mineral soils are mainly Gray Luvisols with some Brunisols. Characteristic wildlife includes woodland caribou, moose, black bear, wolf, beaver, snowshoe hare, red squirrel, raven, and waterfowl. One of the largest concentrations of nesting bald eagles occurs in the Cameron Hills around Bistcho Lake. Land use is mainly limited to hunting and trapping, and oil and gas exploration. The main communities include Fort Liard and Trout Lake. The population of the ecoregion is approximately 600.

This ecoregion is part of the Taiga Plains ecozone.