The objective of the Science component of Nature Chelsea is to gather scientific information to support biodiversity-friendly community planning and decision-making. We do this through the following projects:


Nature Chelsea is gathering data on the occurrence of wild plants and animals in Chelsea. In June 2009, Nature Chelsea held a BioBlitz, a rapid assessment of the biodiversity of four areas in Chelsea. For more information on the BioBlitz, click here.

Wildlife Corridors

Fisher travelling through a wildlife movement corridor near Larrimac golf course

Fisher travelling through a wildlife movement corridor near Larrimac golf course

In October 2009, Carolyn Callaghan and University of Ottawa student Chrystel Losier began a project to study how wild mammals move between Gatineau Park and the Gatineau River in Chelsea. We have identified several wildlife movement corridors, and are monitoring wildlife activity in these corridors. To do this, we have employed spy technology: remote cameras that record movement using infrared. Thus far we have captured images of white-tailed deer, black bear, coyote, red fox, weasel, fisher, and raccoon.

Blanding’s Turtle Habitat

Biodiversity of Chelsea

Blanding’s turtle

University of Ottawa student Luba Reshitnyk studied habitat loss for the Blanding’s Turtle in Chelsea, using satellite remote sensing imagery. The Blanding’s Turtle is a threatened species that relies on wetlands and connected terrestrial habitat and are susceptible to the effects of roads. The results of Luba’s study demonstrate a 10% decline in suitable habitat availability between 1994 and 2007.  Continuing urban development within the municipality may be responsible for this decline. Neighbouring Municipality of Cantley, where more intensive urbanization has occurred, experienced a greater decline in Blanding’s turtle habitat during the same time period.