Report on the Distribution of Dwarf Birches and Present Pollen Rain, Baffin Island, N.W.T., Canada


  • J.T. Andrews
  • W.N. Mode
  • P.J. Webber
  • G.H. Miller
  • J.D. Jacobs



Palynology, Plant distribution, Shrubs, Baffin Island, Nunavut


A distribution map for the dwarf birches is presented for the region from Frobisher Bay northward to Cumberland Peninsula. These shrubs are restricted to favourable habitats which, at the northern limit of the species (67 deg. 40 sec. N), are found on south-facing slopes above the immediate local cooling influence of the sea. Pollen studies within the zone of scattered dwarf birch indicate that pollen dispersal from these low, prostrate shrubs is minimal. Samples of moss collected beneath the bushes have 5-36% Betula pollen; whereas sites no more than 50 m away from Betula shrubs have percentages of <2%. These data will be useful in considering the Holocene and Pleistocene histories of these Low Arctic shrubs in the Eastern Canadian Arctic.