Reliability of avifauna information in a computerized fish and wildlife information system

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Virginia Tech


This study was designed to test the reliability of avifauna information retrieved from Biota of Virginia, BOVA, a computerized fish and wildlife information system developed at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State. University. Reliability was defined as the percent of species that were detected during field surveys that also were listed by BOVA to occur. Six habitat types were selected for study within the Blacksburg Ranger District of the Jefferson National Forest in Southwestern Virginia. These were Mixed (oak-pine) Seedling/Sapling, Mixed Pole, Mixed Mature, Deciduous Pole, Deciduous Mature, and Coniferous Pole. Three stands of each type, each 8-20 hectares in area, were chosen randomly for study: Each stand was surveyed with 12 90-minute survey periods over 2 years. The random-walk technique was used to determine species occurrence. BOVA species lists were determined for comparison with lists of species detected in the field. All species detected in the field and(or) listed by BOVA were placed into at least one status category defined by BOVA (e.g., Federal Migratory, Game, Accidental) or the Virginia Society of Ornithology (e.g., Abundant, Permanent Resident, Transient Breeder).