Restoration of Burns Bog, Delta, British Columbia, Canada

S.A. Howie, T.G. Munson, R.J. Hebda, J.K. Jeglum, P.H. Whitfield and R.A. Dakin

After Wise Use – The Future of Peatlands, Proceedings of the 13th International Peat Congress: Pristine Mire Landscapes

Tullamore, Ireland

british-columbia, ecology, hydrology, raised-bog, restoration

Howie 2008: Restoration of Burns Bog, Delta, British Columbia, Canada


Over the past 70 years, Burns Bog, the largest raised bog on the west coast of the Americas, was degraded by peat extraction, draining, and deposition of mineral and other fill. Acquired in 2004 by government, the bog is being restored with hydrology as the principal focus. A comprehensive piezometer network has been established and is being monitored. Drainage ditches are being blocked to increase the retention of winter rain into the dry summer. Restoration goals are to return a high water table in the bog, to re-establish Sphagnum cover, and to re-start the peat forming process in degraded sectors. Three years of vegetation plot data reveal that new Sphagnum colonies have become established, a first indication that the water table is rising and that peat-forming vegetation may be responding positively.