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    Author(s): Sally Duncan
    Date: 2003
    Source: Science Findings. Portland, OR: Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Pacific Northwest Research Station. February (51): 1-5
    Publication Series: Science Findings
    Station: Pacific Northwest Research Station
    PDF: View PDF  (247.0 KB)

    Description

    Forest management throughout the world is producing simplified forests. There is growing concern that these forests maintain neither complete vertebrate communities nor conditions favorable to maintenance of genetic diversity of those vertebrate populations that do find habitat in simply structured stands. Genetics is increasingly being used as a basis for management recommendations, yet few field data exist to support these recommendations. To test the effectiveness of management alternatives in providing and maintaining healthy, resilient ecosystems, carefully selected species like flying squirrels may be used to index changes that occur in forests under different management strategies. Understanding how genetic diversity and variability within small populations relate to landscape-level biodiversity is not yet an exact science. However, research on flying squirrels—selected for their complex food web relationships that indicate overall ecosystem productivity—is helping formulate questions that will help us understand how forest management activities affect genetic building blocks.

    Publication Notes

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    • This article was written and prepared by U.S. Government employees on official time, and is therefore in the public domain.

    Citation

    Duncan, Sally. 2003. Sex and the single squirrel: a genetic view of forest management in the Pacific Northwest. Science Findings. Portland, OR: Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Pacific Northwest Research Station. February (51): 1-5

    Keywords

    Genetic diversity, flying squirrels

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