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Relationships between Fire and Bird Density in Coastal Scrub and Slash Pine Flatwoods in Florida

David R. Breininger and Rebecca B. Smith
The American Midland Naturalist
Vol. 127, No. 2 (Apr., 1992), pp. 233-240
Published by: University of Notre Dame
DOI: 10.2307/2426529
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2426529
Page Count: 8
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Relationships between Fire and Bird Density in Coastal Scrub and Slash Pine Flatwoods in Florida
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Abstract

Bird densities within coastal scrub and slash pine flatwoods were compared with time since fire, mean shrub height, number of snags and percent burn. Most shrubdwelling birds preferred older stands (>10 yr since last fire) with taller shrubs, or intermediate stands (4 yr since last fire) than recently burned stands (1-2 yr since last fire). Five species were negatively correlated with percent burn in stands burned 1-2 yr previously. The downy woodpecker was most abundant in recently burned areas. Densities of three species of woodpeckers and the northern bobwhite were positively correlated with snag density. The results suggest that extensive burns occurring every 4 yr or less are likely to have a negative influence on shrub-dwelling birds that are a natural component of these coastal communities.

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