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Regional Assessment of Remote Forests and Black Bear Habitat from Forest Resource SurveysAuthor(s): Victor A. Rudis; John B. Tansey
Source: Journal of Wildlife Management 59(1): 170-180.
Publication Series: Miscellaneous Publication
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DescriptionWe developed a spatially explicit modeling approach, using a county-scaled remote forest (i.e., forested area reserved from or having no direct human interference) assessment derived from 1984-1990 forest resource inventory data and a 1984 black bear (Ursus americantus) range map for 12 states in the southern United States.We defined minimum suitable and optimal black bear habitat criteria and geo-referenced remote forest classification with existing black bear range.Using a suitable habitat criterion, we classified 97.2% of occupied and 9.7% of unoccupied range (38.9% of the south. U.S. region's area).Using optimal habitat criteria, we classificed 69.8% of occupied and 60.1% of unoccupied range (63.3% of the region's area), interpreted occupied range without optimal habitat as suboptimal areas (9.9% of the region's area), and unoccupied range with optimal habitat as areas with repopulation potential (26.8%) of the region's area).There was a lack of high-density (>=34%) optimal habitat linkages among existing black bear populations, which we constructed as a limitation on interpopulation gene flow.We recommend expansion of future regional land surveys to (1) address large carnivore mammal habitat and broad home ranges of other species that may conflict with humans or domestic animals, (2) include field inventories of woodland and reserved areas, (3) use standard measures to assess remote forests, and (4) organize available data in a geographic information system.
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CitationRudis, Victor A.; Tansey, John B. 1995. Regional Assessment of Remote Forests and Black Bear Habitat from Forest Resource Surveys. Journal of Wildlife Management 59(1): 170-180.
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