Using LiDAR to evaluate forest landscape and health factors and their relationship to habitat of the endangered Mount Graham red squirrel on the Coronado National Forest, Pinaleño Mountains, Arizona
|Authors:||John Brent Mitchell.Anhold, Haans Fisk.|
|Source:||Potter, K.M., and B.L. Conkling, editors. 2015. Forest Health Monitoring: National Status, Trends and Analysis, 2014. General Technical Report SRS-209. Asheville, North Carolina: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Southern Research Station. 190 p.|
The Pinaleño Mountains in southeastern Arizona represent a Madrean sky island ecosystem that contains the southernmost expanse of spruce-r forest type in North America. This ecosystem is also the last remaining habitat for the Mt. Graham red squirrel (Tamiasciurus hudsonicus grahamenis), a federally listed endangered species. Due to a general shift in species composition and forest structure of spruce-r type forests across the Southwest, the ecosystem is being threatened by large high-severity res, insect infestation, and a general loss of biodiversity. These risk factors have led the Coronado National Forest to begin a forest restoration effort using LiDAR (light detection and ranging) as a tool for identifying habitat and cataloging forest inventory variables at a landscape level. LiDAR was identied as an efcient tool for lling the data collection needs because eld data collection is restricted due to rugged terrain and safety concerns.