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Tree species used by birds in logged and unlogged mixed coniferous forests


, : Tree species used by birds in logged and unlogged mixed coniferous forests. Wilson Bulletin 90(2): 221-238

Variation in avian selection of tree species in a community which had undergone an overstory removal form of timber harvesting was compared to a virgin, mixed-coniferous forest, in the White Mountains, Arizona [USA], during the summers of 1973 and 1974. Tree species preferences for all birds observed indicated Douglas-fir, white fir, and Engelmann spruce were the most frequently visited species in both habitats and were used in both unmodified and logged areas in excess of the proportion of foliage volume they contained in the entire habitat. Ponderosa pine and southwestern white pine were frequented less than expected on the basis of availability. Although aspen constituted > 50% of the available foliage in the harvested habitat, birds did not appear to compensate for the reduction in density of firs and spruces by increasing their use of it. Whereas some species in the modified environment, such as the mountain chickadee, became more generalized and therefore less selective as to tree species, the ruby-crowned kinglet apparently became more restricted, and hence, more specialized in tree species preferences. Use of quaking aspen, the only species not removed during harvesting, and snags (dead trees) was higher in the modified than in the unaltered habitat.

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