Publication Details

Silvicultural options for neotropical migratory birds

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Thompson, Frank R.; Probst, John R.; Raphael, Martin G.

Year Published

1993

Publication

In: Finch, Deborah M.; Stangel, Peter W. (eds.). Status and management of neotropical migratory birds: September 21-25, 1992, Estes Park, Colorado. Gen. Tech. Rep. RM-229. Fort Collins, Colo.: Rocky Mountain Forest and Range Experiment Station, U.S. Dept. of Agriculture, Forest Service: 353-362

Abstract

We review: factors that affect forest bird populations; basic concepts of silvicultural systems; potential impacts of these systems on neotropical migratory birds (NTMBs); and conclude with management recommendations for integrating NTMB conservation with forest management. We approach this topic from a regional-landscape scale to a forest stand-habitat scale, rather than the traditional stand-level approach. Populations are determined by interactions between local habitat factors such as vegetation structure and regional or landscape features such as total habitat area, amount of edge, habitat context, and biogeography. The four silvicultural systems commonly used in North America are selection, shelterwood, seed tree, and clearcutting systems. Clearcutting, seed tree, and shelterwood systems create a mosaic of evenaged stands; the selection system maintains an unevenaged forest or stand. Evenaged management creates an age-class distribution of forest stands that may differ from landscapes with no timber harvest. Juxtaposition of different aged stands results in increased amounts of edge in the forest which may affect the reproductive success of NTMB, but consequences of this may not be significant compared to alteration of forest age-class structure. Regeneration or harvest cuts result in replacement of a mature forest bird community with a young forest bird community. Selection cutting retains much of the mature forest bird community within a stand as well as providing habitat for some early successional species that use the shrub-sapling layer. Edge effects around group selection cuts may be a concern because these openings, although small, may be numerous and widespread.

NTMBs have diverse requirements for nesting and foraging. We believe the only way to incorporate their diverse needs with other forest resources is a hierarchiai, top down, approach that begins at a continental scale, identifies opportunities at regional scales, sets composition and structure goals at a landscape scale and management unit scale, and matches management prescriptions to goals at a habitat-stand scale. We make NTMB management recommendations at each of these scales.

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Citation

Thompson, Frank R., III; Probst, John R.; Raphael, Martin G. 1993. Silvicultural options for neotropical migratory birds. In: Finch, Deborah M.; Stangel, Peter W. (eds.). Status and management of neotropical migratory birds: September 21-25, 1992, Estes Park, Colorado. Gen. Tech. Rep. RM-229. Fort Collins, Colo.: Rocky Mountain Forest and Range Experiment Station, U.S. Dept. of Agriculture, Forest Service: 353-362

Last updated on: August 22, 2006