Skip to Main Content
Do Red-cockaded Woodpeckers Select Cavity Trees Based on Chemical Composition of Pine Resin?Author(s): Richard N. Conner; Robert H. Johnson; D. Craig Rudolph; Daniel Saenz
Source: Wilson Bull., 115(4), 2003, pp.397-402
Publication Series: Miscellaneous Publication
PDF: Download Publication (169 KB)
DescriptionWe examined resin chemistry of loblolly (Pinus taeda) and shortleaf (P. echinata) pines selected as cavity trees by Red-cockaded Woodpeckers (Picoides borealis) in eastern Texas. We sampled resin from (1) pines selected by Red-cockaded Woodpeckers that contained naturally excavated active cavities, (2) pines selected by forest biologists that contained artificially installed cavity inserts and were actively being used by Red-cockaded Woodpeckers, and (3) control pines of similar age and appearance to the active cavity trees. We hypothesized that if woodpeckers are inducing a change in resin chemistry by excavating resin wells, this change should appear in active cavity trees selected by woodpeckers and trees selected by biologists, but not in control pines. If woodpeckers are selecting pines that have specific resin chemistry, concentrations of some resin components in active cavity trees selected by the woodpeckers for natural cavity excavation should be different from both control pines and pines selected by biologists. A large diterpene acid peak containing an isopimaric-levopimaric-palustric methyl-ester mix in active natural cavity trees was approximately 20% greater than controls and 22% greater than trees with artificial cavities. None of the other eight resin chemicals differed among treatments. The activity of Red-cockaded Woodpeckers at resin wells did not appear to affect the composition of cavity tree resin. Woodpeckers, however, may select pines with specific resin chemistries for cavity trees.
- You may send email to email@example.com to request a hard copy of this publication.
- (Please specify exactly which publication you are requesting and your mailing address.)
- We recommend that you also print this page and attach it to the printout of the article, to retain the full citation information.
- This article was written and prepared by U.S. Government employees on official time, and is therefore in the public domain.
CitationConner, Richard N.; Johnson, Robert H.; Rudolph, D. Craig; Saenz, Daniel. 2003. Do Red-cockaded Woodpeckers Select Cavity Trees Based on Chemical Composition of Pine Resin?. Wilson Bull., 115(4), 2003, pp.397-402
- The red-cockaded woodpecker cavity tree: A very special pine
- The red-cockaded woodpecker: interactions with fire, snags, fungi, rat snakes and pileated woodpeckers
- Southern pine beetle-induced mortality of pines with natural and artificial red-cockaded woodpecker cavities in Texas
XML: View XML