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Bird Response to Snag Removal in Ponderosa Pine

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In an Arizona study the population of cavity-nesting birds declined by 52 percent on a plot in ponderosa pine (Pinus ponderosa Laws.) when conifer snags were removed during a timber harvest but some quaking aspen (Populus tremuloides Michx.) snags were left standing. On an adjacent plot where snags were left standing, birds increased by 23 percent. There was also a 31-percent increase on an unharvested control plot. Population of violet-green swallows (Tachycineta thalassina) decreased from 20.7 pairs per 100 acres to 2.2 pairs on the plot where snags were removed. There was no significant change in populations of open-nesting birds but gray-headed juncos (Junco caniceps) and American robins (Turdus migratorius) increased on all plots.
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Document Type: Journal Article

Affiliations: Wildlife Research Biologist, U.S. Department of the Interior, Fish and Wildlife Service, Denver Wildlife Research Center, Colorado

Publication date: 1979-01-01

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  • The Journal of Forestry is the most widely circulated scholarly forestry journal in the world. In print since 1902, the Journal has received several national awards for excellence. The mission of the Journal of Forestry is to advance the profession of forestry by keeping forest management professionals informed about significant developments and ideas in the many facets of forestry: economics, education and communication, entomology and pathology, fire, forest ecology, geospatial technologies, history, international forestry, measurements, policy, recreation, silviculture, social sciences, soils and hydrology, urban and community forestry, utilization and engineering, and wildlife management. The Journal is published bimonthly: January, March, May, July, September, and November.

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