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Managing Mid-Rotation Pine Plantations to Enhance Bachman's Sparrow Habitat

James W. Tucker, Jr., Geoffrey E. Hill and Nicholas R. Holler
Wildlife Society Bulletin (1973-2006)
Vol. 26, No. 2 (Summer, 1998), pp. 342-348
Published by: Wiley on behalf of the Wildlife Society
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/3784060
Page Count: 7
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Abstract

Bachman's sparrow (Aimophila aestivalis) ranks high among the bird species of greatest management concern in the southeastern United States. Bachman's sparrows typically occur in mature pine (Pinus spp.) forests that have a limited shrub layer and a dense, herbaceous ground cover, and in recently planted (within 1-5 yrs) clearcuts. Middle-aged pine stands usually are not occupied by Bachman's sparrows. At Tyndall Air Force Base in northwest Florida, we found Bachman's sparrows exclusively within burned, mid-aged (17- to 28-yr-old) slash pine (P. elliottii) plantations. Bachman's sparrows were more abundant (Z = 2.74, P = 0.006) in burned stands than in similarly managed unburned stands. Within burned stands, a positive correlation existed between number of Bachman's sparrows and relative volume of grass (rs = 0.46). Prescribed burning in pine plantations can produce suitable habitat conditions for Bachman's sparrow in stands younger than most studies have suggested.

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