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The importance of shortleaf pine for wildlife and diversity in mixed oak-pine forests and in pine-grassland woodlandsAuthor(s): Ronald E. Masters
Source: In: Kabrick, John M.; Dey, Daniel C.; Gwaze, David, eds. Shortleaf pine restoration and ecology in the Ozarks: proceedings of a symposium; 2006 November 7-9; Springfield, MO. Gen. Tech. Rep. NRS-P-15. Newtown Square, PA: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Northern Research Station: 35-46.
Publication Series: General Technical Report - Proceedings
Station: Northern Research Station
PDF: Download Publication (625.59 KB)
DescriptionShortleaf pine, by virtue of its wide distribution and occurrence in many forest types in eastern North America, is an important species that provides high habitat value for many wildlife species. Shortleaf pine functions as a structural habitat element in both mixed oak-pine forests and in pine-grassland woodlands. It also adds diversity throughout all stages of plant succession and stand development. Within the range of shortleaf pine, wildlife species are variously associated with shortleaf based on stand density, the proportion of hardwoods within a structural stage of development, and availability of habitat structure within the specific niche that each wildlife species occupies. Shortleaf also is a key species in ecosystems where it occurs naturally because its occurrence and relative dominance are defined to a large extent by the natural disturbance regime, particularly fire. Fire frequency and season, to some extent, define the understory plant community response and determine shortleaf pine's potential for regeneration, establishment of future codominant and dominant trees, and perpetuate a relative mix of pines with other associated tree species within a stand. This understory community response to fire or lack of fire defines much of the ground-dwelling or ground-foraging wildlife species populations. This paper discusses wildlife species associated with different structural characteristics and fire regime in mixed oak-shortleaf and shortleaf-dominated forests and woodlands.
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CitationMasters, Ronald E. 2007. The importance of shortleaf pine for wildlife and diversity in mixed oak-pine forests and in pine-grassland woodlands. In: Kabrick, John M.; Dey, Daniel C.; Gwaze, David, eds. Shortleaf pine restoration and ecology in the Ozarks: proceedings of a symposium; 2006 November 7-9; Springfield, MO. Gen. Tech. Rep. NRS-P-15. Newtown Square, PA: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Northern Research Station: 35-46.
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