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Ecological Framework of Canada
Ecoregions of Canada


This ecoregion occurs west of Lake Melville in southern Labrador. The climate is continental and is not affected by the Atlantic Ocean. The mean annual temperature is approximately -3.5°C. The mean summer temperature is 9.5°C, and the mean winter temperature is -16.5°C. The mean annual precipitation ranges 750-1000 mm. The ecoregion is classified as having a low subarctic ecoclimate. The predominant vegetation consists of low, open and sometimes closed cover patches of black spruce with an understory of dwarf birch, Labrador tea, lichens, and moss. Balsam fir occurs only on moist slopes. Black spruce is the climax species. Frequent fires commonly reduce the tree cover to scrubland, dominated by dwarf birch, ericaceous shrubs, and lichens. Exposed rocky positions tend to be lichen-covered. This ecoregion is basically an undulating to dissected plain, where broad river valleys and rolling hills may range in elevation 365-600 m asl. Underlain by massive Archean granites, gneisses, and acidic intrusives, its surface is covered by hummocky to drumlinized, sandy morainal deposits of variable thickness. Fluvioglacial kames and terraces occupy many of the valley floors. Peatlands dominate poorly drained areas. Humo-Ferric Podzols are the dominant soils with significant inclusions of Ferro-Humic Podzols, Dystric Brunisols, Organic Fibrisols, and Organic Cryosols. Permafrost is found in isolated patches, mainly in peatlands. This ecoregion provides habitat for caribou, moose, black bear, red fox, and lynx. Land use activities include hunting, trapping, and outdoor recreation.

This ecoregion is part of the Taiga Shield ecozone.