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dc.contributor.authorAllen, Jennifer C.en_US
dc.date.accessioned2014-03-14T20:33:18Z
dc.date.available2014-03-14T20:33:18Z
dc.date.issued2001-03-06en_US
dc.identifier.otheretd-04102001-180647en_US
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/10919/31670
dc.description.abstractSPECIES-HABITAT RELATIONSHIPS FOR THE BREEDING BIRDS OF A LONGLEAF PINE ECOSYSTEM Jennifer C. Allen ABSTRACT At the Fort Bragg Military Installation, an army base in North Carolina, the habitat associations for the breeding bird species and the effects of the current prescribed fire program on the avifauna are virtually unknown. Fort Bragg encompasses one of the largest, fire-dependent longleaf pine systems existing today and is a mosaic of forested habitats. I used bird count data collected during 1994-1997 at 50-m fixed radius point count stations to examine bird species-habitat relationships in relation to fire treatment (i.e., fire intense longleaf pine woodlands versus fire suppressed mixed pine-hardwood and hardwood forests) and a riparian-upland habitat gradient, and at multiple spatial scales (i.e., the microhabitat and landscape). I used two-way factorial analyses to test for the effects of fire treatment and the riparian-upland habitat gradient on total bird abundance, species richness, and species relative abundance. To examine species-habitat associations at multiple spatial scales, I measured vegetation characteristics at a 50-m radius microhabitat scale, and I quantified landscape structural attributes at a 300-m to 1500-m radius landscape scale using a GIS database and the spatial analysis program FRAGSTATS. I then used logistic regression to determine which microhabitat and landscape variables were associated with the probability of occurrence for each species and which spatial scale was of greater relative importance to a speciesâ occurrence. Finally, I tested logistic regression (LR) models and multiple linear regression (MLR) models, specific to the microhabitat scale, with independent data to evaluate their usefulness at predicting the occurrence and relative abundance for several breeding bird species. Total bird abundance did not vary across fire treatment and species richness may be only slightly greater in fire suppressed habitats, even though this habitat offered greater structural complexity than the park-like longleaf pine, fire intense habitats. Both total bird abundance and species richness were highest within the riparian habitat of streamhead pocosins, which offered distinctive vegetative characteristics otherwise lacking in this landscape. The fire treatment and riparian-upland habitat gradient also were greatly associated with the relative abundance of many species. Four bird species assemblages were defined based on the relative abundance patterns across fire treatments and the riparian-upland gradient: longleaf pine, fire suppressed, drain (i.e., riparian habitat), and generalist assemblages. Continued longleaf pine restoration using growing season prescribed fire likely will cause a decline in species of the fire suppressed assemblage in mixed pine-hardwood and hardwood forests, including many Neotropical migrant songbirds, but will greatly benefit members of the longleaf pine assemblage, such as the Red-cockaded Woodpecker, Brown-headed Nuthatch, Prairie Warbler, and Bachmanâ s Sparrow. Breeding bird distributions in this fire-influenced, forest-dominated system were associated with attributes at both microhabitat and landscape spatial scales, though microhabitat attributes generally were of greater importance for the occurrence of most species. Microhabitat variation associated with the fire management gradient (intensely burned habitat versus fire suppressed habitat) and the riparian-upland gradient were the most frequent predictors in the species-habitat models. These results are similar to other studies documenting that microhabitat features were more influential than landscape features for birds in a naturally patchy or forest-dominated landscape. The microhabitat LR (probability of occurrence) models performed best in presence/absence classification when tested with the same data used for model development (cross-validation tests), and the LR and MLR (relative abundance) models performed better for an independent two-year data set compared to an independent one-year data set (validation tests). Although most MLR models were not significantly biased when tested with an independent two-year data set, these models had relatively low precision, suggesting they can be used to predict species relative abundance across a large area but they may not be sensitive to changes in abundance at individual count stations. These model validation results suggest that modeling species occurrence, rather than both occurrence and relative abundance, would have been sufficient to describe general species-habitat associations and to produce reliable, predictive models sensitive to changes in microhabitat structure and composition.en_US
dc.publisherVirginia Techen_US
dc.relation.haspartjca_thesis_etd.pdfen_US
dc.rightsI hereby certify that, if appropriate, I have obtained and attached hereto a written permission statement from the owner(s) of each third party copyrighted matter to be included in my thesis, dissertation, or project report, allowing distribution as specified below. I certify that the version I submitted is the same as that approved by my advisory committee. I hereby grant to Virginia Tech or its agents the non-exclusive license to archive and make accessible, under the conditions specified below, my thesis, dissertation, or project report in whole or in part in all forms of media, now or hereafter known. I retain all other ownership rights to the copyright of the thesis, dissertation or project report. I also retain the right to use in future works (such as articles or books) all or part of this thesis, dissertation, or project report.en_US
dc.subjectlandscapeen_US
dc.subjecthabitaten_US
dc.subjectlongleaf pineen_US
dc.subjectfireen_US
dc.subjectbirdsen_US
dc.subjectspatial scaleen_US
dc.subjectmodelen_US
dc.titleSpecies-Habitat Relationships for the Breeding Birds of a Longleaf Pine Ecosystemen_US
dc.typeThesisen_US
dc.contributor.departmentBiologyen_US
dc.description.degreeMaster of Scienceen_US
thesis.degree.nameMaster of Scienceen_US
thesis.degree.levelmastersen_US
thesis.degree.grantorVirginia Polytechnic Institute and State Universityen_US
thesis.degree.disciplineBiologyen_US
dc.contributor.committeechairWalters, Jeffrey R.en_US
dc.contributor.committeememberStauffer, Dean F.en_US
dc.contributor.committeememberCollazo, Jaime A.en_US
dc.contributor.committeememberJones, Robert H.en_US
dc.identifier.sourceurlhttp://scholar.lib.vt.edu/theses/available/etd-04102001-180647/en_US
dc.date.sdate2001-04-10en_US
dc.date.rdate2002-06-20
dc.date.adate2001-06-20en_US


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