Swamp Conifer Deeryards in Northern Michigan Their Ecology and Management
Abstract:A study of winter range use by white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus) in conifer swamps of Michigan's Upper Peninsula indicated that all-age forests were uninhabited, despite an abundance of browse, because shelter requirements were lacking. Interspersion of food and cover on small, diverse tracts promptly led to overuse of white-cedar (Thuja occidentalis), followed by herd die-offs. Habitat of high carrying capacity was characterized by various large even-aged stands. Findings suggest deeryard management should aim at creating, within a compartment, five age classes of timber with 15 to 20 years between classes, and a rotation cycle of 80 to 100 years. Clearcutting by the alternate-strip method, on blocks between 40 and 160 acres, is recommended. Units supplying browse or shelter must be arranged to regulate winter deer activity and minimize forest damage.
Document Type: Journal Article
Affiliations: Biologist in charge, Cusino Wildlife Research Station, Michigan Department of Conservation, Shingleton
Publication date: July 1, 1965
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