SUGGESTED PROTOCOL FOR LAND CLEARING
 

4.5 Seasonal and temporal variation in the visibility of animals must be taken into account when wildlife detection and capture procedures are being performed.

For example: many animals are primarily nocturnal, and are less visible and active during winter months. They are therefore much more at risk from earth works and land-clearing during these times, and in colder weather.

4.6 Particular attention must be paid to the results of the fauna survey to ensure that the specific methods used to detect and capture animals reflect the diversity of species expected at the site.

For example: in a site identified as habitat for groundhogs, badgers, ground squirrels, skunks or other ground-dwelling fauna, it is insufficient to simply concentrate effort on habitat trees. Thorough searching of all strata and wildlife habitats is necessary.

Removal of terrestrial wildlife

4.7 Terrestrial wildlife may be removed from the site prior to the onset of vegetation clearing using a variety of trapping methods. These methods will generally have been detailed in the fauna survey report prepared by the wildlife control operator or by other consultants to the project.

4.8 Specific habitat features of interest, such as log piles, rocky outcrops, riparian and wetland areas should be indicated on the site map prepared by the wildlife control operator and deserve special attention. These areas should be cleared or disturbed only after less important surrounding habitat areas have been cleared. This is important because it provides opportunity for more intensive trapping around the feature, improved visibility for the wildlife control operator, and allows more flexibility to apply less destructive clearing methods.

4.9 The wildlife control operator must ensure that he/she has adequate numbers of appropriately trained staff working on habitat features likely to contain high numbers of wildlife that may scatter when the feature is disturbed.

4.10 It is the responsibility of the wildlife control operator to ensure that clearing methods used on terrestrial habitat features of special interest are appropriate to ensure minimal risk of injury or death to wildlife contained therein.

For example: log piles should be gently dismantled one by one, rather than bulldozed en masse. Hollow logs should be carefully inspected using a flashlight, and may require windows to be cut with a chainsaw for thorough inspection, prior to disposal or burning.