Influence of hardwood midstory and pine species on pine bole arthropods
Arthropod density on the boles of loblolly pines (Pinus taeda) was compared between a stand with and stand without hardwood midstory and between a stand of loblolly and shortleaf pines (P. echinata) in the Stephen E Austin Experimental Forest, Nacogdoches Co., Texas, USA from September 1993 through July 1994. Arthropod density was greatest (t = 5.67, 10 d.f., P < 0.001) in an open pine stand nearly devoid of hardwood midstory than in a pine stand with dense hardwood midstory. Loblolly pine had greater (t = 2.34, 10.9 d.f., P = 0.040) arthropod densities than shortleaf pine. Vegetative characteristics within a pine stand rather than bark rugosity appear to be the dominant factor determining arthropod density on the boles of pines. The red-cockaded woodpecker (Picoides borealis) should benefit from greater abundances of arthropods on the boles of pines particularly during the nesting season. In order to provide prime foraging habitat for the red-cockaded woodpecker, land managers should consider the vegetative community structure within foraging habitat.