Alberta Parks Home

Joyce Gould, PhD, PBiol

Parks Division

Major Responsibilities / Research Interests

Joyce is responsible for the overall coordination of science and research for Alberta Parks.  She co-chairs the Park Ecology Program.  Joyce has a particular interest in protected area management and rare vascular plant species. Major responsibilities and areas of interest include

Other Involvements

Current or Recent Projects

The majority of the endangered whitebark pine in Alberta occurs in either national or provincial protected areas. Populations of this tree are declining globally at astounding rates due to white pine blister rust (introduced), mountain pine beetle, fire exclusion and climate change. Regeneration of whitebark pine is done entirely by Clark's nutcracker which caches seeds in tree openings or in close proximity to stands of mature trees. Little is known about the characteristics of successful regeneration sites and in particular whether or not fire is required for stands in the northern Rocky Mountains of Alberta. This is of particular importance where several listed species occur within the same area, each having differing responses to fire. An understanding of the role of fire in these landscapes is therefore needed to ensure responsible management.  Dr. Ellen Macdonald (University of Alberta) and Joyce are undertaking research toward this.

Joyce is also coordinating monitoring of approximately 50 health transects located in whitebark and limber pine stands in provincial protected areas. Data from these transects will be used to help inform recovery planning efforts including the identification of trees that may be resistant to white pine blister rust and stands that are of high conservation value due to low levels of infection.

The relationship between soil moisture potential (as determined by Wet Areas Mapping) and vegetation type in Willmore Wilderness Park is being explored through graduate work at University of New Brunswick Vegetation Mapping.

The Willmore Biodiversity Research Project is a collaboration among Alberta Parks, Alberta Innovates and the Alberta Biodiversity Monitoring Institute.  The project is examining several aspects of biodiversity monitoring in Willmore Wilderness Park, Alberta's largest provincial-based mountain park. The general objectives of the project focus on species detection and its implications to monitoring and management. We are also examining issues around sampling design and biodiversity detection, and using these data to build predictive models to inform regional landscape planning (Land-use Framework).

Selected Publications

Crisfield,V., S. E. Macdonald and A. J. Gould. 2012. Effects of recreational traffic on alpine plant communities in the northern Canadian Rockies. Arctic, Antarctic and Alpine Research (in press).

Hiltz, D., J. Gould, J. Ogilvie, P. Arp, and B. White. 2012. Reclamation and restoration of boreal ecosystems: attaining sustainable development. Chapter 4 IN: Reclamation and Restoration of Boreal Ecosystems. Cambridge University Press (in press).

Packer, J. G. and A. J. Gould. 2012. Vascular Plants of Alberta. Part 1: Ferns, Fern Allies, Gymnosperms and Monocots. University of Calgary Press (in review).

Sass, G., M. Wheatley, D. Aldred, J. Gould and I. Creed. 2012. Defining protected area boundaries based on vascular-plant species richness using hydrological information derived from archived satellite imagery. Biological Conservation 147:143-152

Gould, A. J. 2007. A Habitat-based Approach to Rare Vascular Plant Conservation in the Northern Rocky Mountains of Alberta. PhD thesis, University of Alberta.

Kershaw, L., J. Gould, D. Johnson and J. Lancaster. 2000. Rare Vascular Plants of Alberta. University of Alberta Press and NRC Press, Edmonton.

Contact Information
Phone: 780-427-7702
Fax: 780.427.5980
2nd Floor, 9820 106 St.
Edmonton, AB
T5K 2J6

Science & Research