Atlazi River Ecological Reserve Purpose Statement- 2003
Primary Role :The primary role of Atlatzi River Ecological Reserve is to preserve unusual lodgepole pine, sitka spruce, and alder swamps and associated open wetlands in a coastal alluvial landscape. Located on the central mainland coast, 10 kilometres north of the head of Kingcome Inlet, the ecological reserve was protected in conjunction with Kingcome River Ecological Reserve, which is two kilometres away on the floor of the Kingcome River valley. Mountains adjacent to the two ecological reserves rise to 1700 meters, but those at the headwaters of the Kingcome River are among the highest in the province. Proximity to the centre of origin of the heaviest glaciers in British Columbia resulted in pronounced glacial scouring, isostatic depression and marine flooding, and the persistence of glacial environments until a relatively late date. This resulted in a relatively broad and low-gradient valley being formed. This type of physical environment and its associated wetlands and ecosystems are unusual in the Coast Mountains.
The area has fairly extensive stands of lodgepole pine in a fen-swamp environment. A great variety of wetland communities occur here, from open wetlands to treed swamp communities. What distinguishes Atlatzi Reserve from Kingcome is that it has less open fen but equally large hardhack swamps, surrounded by lodgepole pine bog forest which gives way to mixed woods containing cottonwood, red alder, sitka spruce, and hemlock. The two ecological reserves are outstanding for their unusual diversity of swamps, associated fens and pine bog land in a coastal valley bottom. In addition, the area is excellent habitat for both black and grizzly bears.
See the PDF: atlatzi_ps