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    Description

    Uneven-aged forest management has been advocated as a silvicultural practice because of concerns about the negative effects of even-aged management on birds that dwell in mature forests. Recent evidence, however, indicates that in the northeastern United States, bird species that inhabit early successional habitats may be experiencing more widespread declines than their mature-forest counterparts. We compared the effect of group selection, a widely used form of uneven-aged forest management, and clearcutting on nest survival rates of early successional shrubland birds in the White Mountains of New Hampshire. There was no difference in daily nest survival rate between clearcuts (0.990) and groupcuts (0.987) for 16 bird species combined (n = 290), and no difference in daily nest survival rate between clearcuts (0.993) and groupcuts (0.987) for chestnut-sided warblers (Dendroica pensylvanica), the only species for which enough nests were found for separate analysis (n = 217). There was no difference in daily nest survival rates of all species combined between edge (0.983) and interior areas (0.992) of clearcuts (n = 204), and no difference in daily nest survival rates of chestnut-sided warblers between edge (0.984) and interior (0.993) areas of groupcuts (n = 156). Thus, our results suggest that clearcuts and groupcuts provide similar habitat for species of early successional shrubland birds that inhabit both clearcuts and groupcuts. Recent studies, however, indicate that some bird species that use larger openings such as clearcuts do not occupy smaller openings created by group selection, which may limit the utility of group selection in managing habitat for early successional shrubland birds.

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    Citation

    King, David I.; DeGraaf, Richard M.; Griffin, Curtice R. 2001. Productivity of early successional shrubland birds in clearcuts and groupcuts in an eastern deciduous forest. Journal of Wildlife Management. 65(2): 345-350.

    Keywords

    birds, chestnut-sided warbler, clearcutting, Dendroica pensylvanica, even-aged management, group selection, reproductive success, selective cutting, silviculture, uneven-aged management

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