The Boreal Forest is a nearly continuous belt of Coniferous trees across North America and Eurasia. The forest is home to a variety of plant and animal communities that live in different environmental conditions.
The Boreal Forest is Alberta’s largest natural region. The landscape of this region is covered with trees like: aspen, balsam poplar, jack pine and evergreens. In the north part of the region, the evergreens are broken up by water in the form of fens, bogs, lakes and rivers. Many of these wetlands are permanent, and provide habitats for aquatic plants and animal species.
Inside the Boreal Forest of Alberta are large areas of aspen parkland. These areas are located around Peace River, Grande Prairie and Fort Vermilion. Four river systems drain northern Alberta, making wetland areas a characteristic of the Boreal Forest Natural Region.
The climate is influenced by the northern location, with frost occurring at any time of the year in some areas. Some of Alberta’s lowest temperatures are recorded in this region. Because the temperatures are lower, the growing season is shorter. This means that plants requiring a longer growing season do not survive well here.
Human and non-human activities that threaten this natural region include forest fires, mining and logging.
The Boreal Forest Natural Region is further divided into six sub-regions called: Dry Mixedwood, Central Mixedwood, Wetland Mixedwood, Boreal Highlands, Peace River Lowlands, and Subarctic. For further information on the Boreal Forest and sub-regions follow this link and choose a sub-region listed above from the menu at the bottom of the page.
All content was adapted from:
Information provided by and printed with the permission of Alberta Community Development, Provincial Parks and Protected Areas.
Alberta Natural Regions Poster Series Manual (Alberta Environmental Protection)