TERRA-5: July 2000 Progress Report
"What conditions will be needed to maintain plant and animal species associations in the South? "
July 18-19, 2000, Nashville TN
A species screen has been developed to guide this analysis, examined from a wildlife species perspective. Species meet one of the following criteria: federally proposed, threatened, and endangered species; species with viability concerns; game and furbearer species; species with high public interest; and species with demanding habitat requirements.
I have acquired numerous recovery plans to identify species needs and the current threats to habitat. Quantitative descriptions of habitat conditions required by a selected species or species association are being compiled from several sources (Appalachian Black Bear Management Plan, regional bat conservation plans, Old-Growth Conservation Strategy, Southern Appalachian and Ouachita Assessments, and others) as well as from the scientific literature. These include aspects of forest composition and structure, successional stage, and other habitat characteristics necessary to sustain viable populations of forest game and non-game species.
I have also compiled Partners in Flight physiographic plans for identifying species and habitat needs in the southeast. These plans include recommendations concerning minimum patch size, interspersion of vegetation communities, and other elements. I have completed the latest list for those species with PIF concern scores of 22 and above. Created tables of avian species known to breed and inhabit the south by those physiographic regions. I am in the process of gathering Breeding Bird Survey data for tracking population trends (for the last 30 years) for selected species of concern.
Extensive literature searches have been completed relating to the influence of landscape characteristics upon selected wildlife: corridors and linkages, spatial and structural heterogeneity, patch size, edge, and interior forest. I am in the process of identifying critical habitats and habitats requiring restoration (see Question1). I have assembled old-growth community descriptions for the south.
Trends of relative abundance/harvest trends for selected game and furbearer species is being obtained from the RPA assessment (data originates from state agencies). My plans are to include range maps showing the distribution of selected species region-wide and discuss historic ranges when applicable.