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Title: Multiscale habitat suitability index models for priority landbirds in the Central Hardwoods and West Gulf Coastal Plain/Ouachitas Bird Conservation Regions
Author: Tirpak, John M.; Jones-Farrand, D. Todd; Thompson, Frank R., III; Twedt, Daniel J.; Uihlein, William B., III
Publication: Gen. Tech. Rep. NRS-49. Newtown Square, PA: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service Northern Research Station. 195 p.
Key Words: conservation planning, ecoregion, forest, Forest Inventory and Analysis, National Landcover Dataset, validation
Abstract: Habitat Suitability Index (HSI) models were developed to assess habitat quality for 40 priority bird species in the Central Hardwoods and West Gulf Coastal Plain/Ouachitas Bird Conservation Regions. The models incorporated both site and landscape environmental variables from one of six nationally consistent datasets. Potential habitat was first defined from unique landform, landcover, and successional age class combinations. Species-specific environmental variables identified from the literature were used to refine initial habitat estimates. Models were verified by comparing subsection-level HSI scores and Breeding Bird Survey (BBS) abundance via Spearman rank correlation. Generalized linear models that predicted BBS abundance as a function of HSI were used to validate models.
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