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4020 Capstone Projects

Friday, April 3, 2020

Presentations will be in rooms 203 and 305 of the Forestry and Geology building and will take place from 9 a.m. – 3 p.m.

Poster presentations will take place between 12 p.m. – 1 p.m.

Working with a client, teams of 5 to 10 students apply and enhance their technical knowledge, structured problem solving, teamwork, project management, and critical thinking abilities to transform a topic into a problem statement.

They then produce a meaningful, implementable, socially acceptable, and robust management plan to resolve it. They identify and develop clear goals and quantifiable objectives, collect social and site-specific field data, develop alternatives, analyze them, and transform them into management plans.

Related: 4020: Solving complex environmental and forestry issues


A traditional forest management plan has been developed for W & R Gillespie Ltd. The objectives of the project are to sustainably manage 3700 hectares of non-contiguous properties to produce high-quality timber, increase financial gain, improve roads and property lines, and identify other values such as wildlife, sensitive, and at-risk areas.

The ten management areas are delineated into 72 forest stands and recommendations are provided on a per area and per stand basisThree management scenarios are explored, and compared to W & R Gillespie’s status quo, forecasted 50 years into the future.

A short and long-term operations plan is presented for the scenario that best meet the project objectives. Some innovations used in the project include OSM growth and yield paired with FORUS, and an Enhanced Forest Inventory with LiDAR to supplement the data collected in the field.

Team members

  • Storm Robinson-Campbell
  • Michael Brasnett
  • Braden Pelletier
  • Chris Pidgeon
  • Taylor Peterson
  • Donovan Morrell
  • Caleb Waite
  • Logan MacCulloch
  • Brendan Ross
  • Bradley Kay

Clients: Billy Gillespie, Brodie Coburn

The primary goal of this project was to improve three main ecosystem services provided by Nature Conservancy of Canada’s Sunset Valley Property including: carbon storage, water quality maintenance, species at risk and rare habitat.

We additionally were tasked with providing a non-market valuation of these services through the development of a management plan for the property. During September and October 2019, we completed an inventory for 140-ha of forested areas and 30-ha wetland of wetland areas on the Sunset Valley Property, using methods we developed in early September.

The data from an additional 76-ha wetland located in the property was provided by the Nature Conservancy of Canada. Analysis of this inventory data informed the development of a management plan that incorporated a variety of possible management scenarios to present a final recommendation to enhance the ecosystem services of the forested and wetland areas of the property.

Team members

  • Cameron Arthurs
  • Danielle Clark
  • Hayley Hallihan
  • Melissa Jenkins
  • Laura MacDonald
  • Matthew Milne
  • Benjamin Panes
  • Erin Pearson
  • Bradley Philpott

Client: Nature Conservancy of Canada

Our project conducted a 100% inventory of Oromocto's street trees, Anniversary and Hazen park and trees located on the lawn of the Gage Golf course. A sample inventory was also conducted for the 18ha of forest stands on the golf course.

Our project has involved building a street tree inventory for the Town of Oromocto and using that inventory to make an urban forest management plan with recommendations on how to maintain and increase the health of the urban forest and various services that it provides.

Team members

  • Jordan Allen
  • Michael Depow
  • Megan Doyle
  • John Kandimiris
  • Nigel McLaughlin
  • Kyle MacArthur
  • Graham Mulvihill
  • Spencer Reagon
  • Josh Smith
  • Daniel Snow

Client: Town of Oromocto

The Forest Hill United Church has a small forest parcel within the city of Fredericton, they tasked us with their primary goal of generating revenue from the forest parcel without harvesting timber. Additionally, the church congregation would like to see educational and community involvement opportunities increased.

The unique property has allowed our group to develop a management plan with interesting forest-based projects to increase the revenue and use of the church forest parcel. Earlier this year we did a census of all trees greater than 10 cm in diameter, the single trees on the property, and inventories of the regeneration, vegetation, soil type, and coarse woody debris.

The analysis of the data informed the development of our management scenarios, to create recommendations to achieve the revenue, education, and community involvement goals of the Forest Hill United church.

Team members

  • Emma Berton
  • Jacob Slack
  • Bradley Constantine
  • Martin Dallaporta
  • Kyle Patterson

Client: Forest Hill United Church

The University of New Brunswick (UNB) Faculty of Forestry and Environmental Management (FOREM) is working with the City of Fredericton Parks and Trees division to create an urban forest management plan for Killarney Lake Park.

The 762.5-hectare forest consists of approximately 25 kilometers of all-season hiking and groomed skiing trails frequently used by the public. The primary goals include mitigating and managing the impact of insects, diseases, climate change, and wildfire.

Significant or unique features such as stands, trees, and wildlife zones within the boundary of Killarney Lake Park have been identified and analyzed. Finally, the trail infrastructure was evaluated through an assessment of culverts.

Team members

  • Laura Wukitsch
  • Andrew Thompson
  • Andrew Austin
  • Amy Chadwick
  • Joseph English
  • Nathan Ford
  • Jillian Parlee
  • Alexsis Ramos
  • Jacob Ravn
  • Johnathan Ritchie
  • Breah Sampson-Macdonald

Client: Mike Glynn


Traveler safety is of the upmost importance to the Fredericton International Airport. A primary issue of concern for aircraft safety is wildlife. Wildlife of all types, ranging from birds, bears, deer, to coyotes and more are a point of concern for the airport, as these animals pose a hazard to incoming and outgoing flights.

The Fredericton airport currently has a wildlife management plan that offers some solutions for managing wildlife in the area, however this plan is not tailored specifically to the Fredericton Airport.

The goal of this project is to provide a variety of short-term and long-term management strategies for the Fredericton Airport to minimize wildlife entries into the airport grounds and to minimize hazards that these wildlife species pose.

This project provides species specific management strategies and supporting documents to airport staff to manage wildlife in a safe and effective way.

Team members

  • Sarah Cusack
  • Lauren Verner
  • Aiden Isbill
  • Kaylee Mcleod
  • Lydia Giffin
  • Ben Gorringe

Client: Fredericton International Airport (YFC)

Our team is creating a management plan for a generational family owned property that has been traditionally used for conventional agriculture over the past estimated 60 years.

Our client is first generation regenerative agriculture farmer and this factor this was highly considered when making land management plans and recommendations. This was due to feasibility and experience constraints of our client.

The project and report will outline how to incorporate environmentally friendly techniques and practices that follow the definition and characteristics of regenerative agriculture. Recommendations are highly tailored to the specifics of this property as well as client personal goals and vision for the property.

This will be achieved by highly valuing all aspects of soil health, maximizing efficiency, maximizing site based resources, minimizing costs, maximizing ecological services, and encouraging community involvement.

Special considerations were made to incorporate the expected challenges that are associated with climate change. The management plan includes research-based recommendations for typical agricultural practices such as irrigation techniques, crop placement, plant diversity, weed and pest management, and fencing options on a highly productive small-scale site of 2 acres.

Our client’s goal is to work alongside nature and its natural processes, to grow a wide variety of cash crops that are to be sold either roadside to the surrounding immediate community, or at local markets as the main source of income.

Team members

  • Alexa English
  • Bhreagh Krszwda
  • Cam Porter
  • Matthew Golding

Client: Allan MacDougall

Throughout this project, we developed a method to define and delineate functional riparian ecosystems as a potential option to increase the protected areas in New Brunswick.

The project included defining riparian ecosystems, outlining their key functions and delineating the ecosystem using a three-zone, variable-width model. This model was created using an algorithm that considers saturated soil, slope, and the habitat ranges of selected umbrella species.

This model was first applied to a case study within the Dunbar watershed, then applied elsewhere in the province through various scenarios to demonstrate the alternative management options.

Team members

  • Matthew Warner
  • Bethany Goodine
  • Rachael Moran
  • Kristine Hanifen
  • Mike Betts
  • Cameron Solda

Client: Department of Natural Resources and Energy Development

Our group was tasked with updating water quality, nutrient loading and emerging issues sections of the 2011 Saint John River, A State of the Environment Report by the Canadian Rivers Institute and Environment and Climate Change Canada.

This involved creating a database to collate all water quality data from over 10 different watershed and government organizations across the province, analyzing it and producing representative graphs for the status and trends over the last 10 years for each variable.

We then produced a management plan for the Fredericton Area section of the Wolastoq/SJR using the water quality data from our database and the Watershed Stressor Index as a baseline and then consulting local watershed organizations and municipal representatives to more accurately assess causes of water quality degradation and provide area-specific recommendations for mitigation and adaptation.

A sub-objective of this project was to assess how well the empirical data from WSI and our database matched up with reports and information gathered from local organizations. In doing so, we assessed how effective these resources are in developing management plans for the watershed as a whole.

Team members

  • Colin Boynton
  • Tatyana Vukovic
  • Daniel Nunes
  • Jacob Griffin
  • Lezley McAllister
  • Samantha Rogers

Client: CRI - Michelle Gray

The purpose of this study is to present and review options for meeting University of New Brunswick’s greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions reduction targets using carbon offsets. The study addresses several key questions related to the types of carbon offsets available, best-in-class carbon offsets, and costs and benefits to the University.

The study also evaluates the capacity of a potential carbon sequestration management plan for UNB forest lands. This plan is intended to meet targets for carbon offsetting through a high-level assessment of on-site forest carbon storage, potential carbon maximization techniques via silviculture, while reporting expected project costs.

A suite of carbon offset strategies will be weighed and measured to provide recommendations to UNB Sustainability for improved carbon offsetting for obtaining UNB’s 2050 carbon neutrality goal.

Team members

  • Dakota Tomah
  • Brandon Leblanc
  • Leah Levesque
  • Devin Luke
  • Morgan Blenkhorn
  • Alex Pitre

Client: UNB Sustainability