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Distribution and Habitat Use of Mexican Spotted Owls in Arizona

Joseph L. Ganey and Russell P. Balda
The Condor
Vol. 91, No. 2 (May, 1989), pp. 355-361
DOI: 10.2307/1368314
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/1368314
Page Count: 7
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Distribution and Habitat Use of Mexican Spotted Owls in Arizona
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Abstract

Distribution and habitat use of Mexican Spotted Owls (Strix occidentalis lucida) in Arizona were studied from 1984-1988. Owls were widely but patchily distributed throughout the state except for the arid southwestern portion. Distribution of the owl corresponded with distribution of forested mountains and canyonlands within the state. Owls occurred either in rocky canyons or in any of several forest types, and were most common where unlogged closed canopy (>80%) forests occurred in steep canyons. Several forest types provided these habitat characteristics in southern Arizona, and owls occurred in all of them. Only unlogged mixed-conifer forest provided these characteristics in northern Arizona, and most owls (67%) were found in this forest type in northern Arizona. Many owls in northern Arizona (54%) were located in areas where timber harvest was either occurring now or was planned in the next 5 years. Owls could not be located at 27% of the historic sites resurveyed, indicating that population levels may have declined in Arizona.

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