Algonquin Provincial Park is a conservation area located in southeastern Ontario (Figure 1). It is a 772, 300 ha stretch of forest that was declared Ontario's first provincial park in 1893 (The Friends of Algonquin Park 2018). Algonquin Provincial Park is the primary habitat location for Algonquin wolves (Benson, Mills and Patterson 2015), with an estimated adult population of below 500 individuals (Ontario 2014). As a threatened species within a provincial park (Ontario 2014), Algonquin wolves are protected from their main threats within Algonquin. These threats include hunting and trapping practices, as well as high traffic road mortality (Ontario 2014). With Algonquin wolves being a long-standing species of concern, there is significant historical data surrounding their spatial distribution within the park.
Algonquin Provincial Park consists of a transition state between northern boreal forests and lowlands further south, with various forest types including different pine and hardwoods (Norris, Theberge and Theberge 2002). With various vegetation types, Algonquin Provincial Park has a substantial history of forest fires documented and analyzed throughout the years (Cwynar 1977). Because both fire occurrences and wolf spatial distributions are closely monitored within the park, Algonquin Provincial Park is an excellent study location for a spatial analysis of wolf distributions in response to forest fires. With forest fires predicted to increase, particularly for boreal forest regions ("Climate change and fire | Natural Resources Canada" 2017), future implications of forest fires on ecological factors within Algonquin are to be expected. Specific ecological factors can include not only species population numbers, but also species distributions within the park.
Figure 1. Map of Algonquin Provincial Park. Data Sources include OMNR (2008), MNR (2008), MNRF (2007), and OMNR (2010).