Early succession bird communities of group-selection openings and clearcuts in the Ouachita Mountains, Arkansas and OklahomaThis article is part of a larger document. View the larger document here.
Abstract - We compared species presence/absence and density of nongame birds across a range of group-selection opening sizes and clearcuts. Group openings and clearcuts were harvested the summer of 1993. Birds were surveyed during 1995, 1996, and 1998 in 12 group openings ranging in size from 0.54 to 2.62 ac and within 4 clearcuts of approximately 35-40 ac each. Several species occurred throughout a variety of available opening sizes and many had their highest densities recorded in group openings. Bird densities were only related with opening size during 1995. No correlations with opening size were apparent for densities of individual species. Results indicate that group-selection cuts in late-rotation, shortleaf pine-dominated stands may help enhance relative breeding bird abundance. However, our data reflect bird responses to the initial transition of an uneven-aged forest structure, and may not adequately represent responses in the latter part of this transition. Additionally, data are needed on reproductive success of birds utilizing these openings under a variety of successional stages.