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Silva Fennica 1926-1997
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Articles by Mathieu Bouchard

Category: Research article

article id 31, category Research article
Jeovanna Lowe, David Pothier, Jean-Pierre L. Savard, Ghislain Rompré, Mathieu Bouchard. (2011). Snag characteristics and cavity-nesting birds in the unmanaged post-fire northeastern Canadian boreal forest. Silva Fennica vol. 45 no. 1 article id 31. https://doi.org/10.14214/sf.31
We studied the availability and characteristics of snags and their use by cavity-nesting birds in the northeastern part of the Canadian boreal forest. We built up two long-term (> 200 years) chronosequences following time since the last fire in the unmanaged boreal forest of northeastern Québec, one in the balsam fir-white birch domain (southern region) and one in the spruce-mosses domain (northern region). We then sampled and characterized snags and live trees in 30 stands from each of these two chronosequences. We also looked for nest cavities on all sampled snags, performed bird inventories by point counts, and calculated tree mortality rate from permanent sample plots. Results show that mortality rates follow a U-shaped pattern, with more snags of large diameter (> 20 cm DBH) in young (< 50 years) and in old (> 200 years) forests. In the latter, we also found more nest cavities than in any other age classes. Although abundance of primary cavity nesters (excavating species) did not vary among age classes, secondary cavity nesters (using cavities already available) tend to be more numerous in older forests. Our results highlight the capacity for young and old-growth forests to provide quality habitat for species that are dependent on large snags. Proper forest management should maintain a mosaic of different age forest stands, including snags, to promote biodiversity and provide important resources for resident bird species.
  • Lowe, Centre d’étude de la foret, Département des sciences du bois et de la foret, Pavillon Abitibi-Price, 2405 rue de la Terrasse, Université Laval, Québec, Québec, G1V 0A6, Canada ORCID ID:E-mail: jeovannalowe@gmail.com (email)
  • Pothier, Centre d’étude de la foret, Département des sciences du bois et de la foret, Pavillon Abitibi-Price, 2405 rue de la Terrasse, Université Laval, Québec, Québec, G1V 0A6, Canada ORCID ID:E-mail:
  • Savard, Wildlife Research, Science and Technology, Québec Region, 1141 Route de l’Église, P.O. Box 10100, Québec, Québec, G1V 4H5, Canada ORCID ID:E-mail:
  • Rompré, Centre d’étude de la foret, Département des sciences du bois et de la foret, Pavillon Abitibi-Price, 2405 rue de la Terrasse, Université Laval, Québec, Québec, G1V 0A6, Canada & Department of Biology and Health Sciences, 84 West South Street, Wilkes University, PA 18766, USA ORCID ID:E-mail:
  • Bouchard, Ministère des Ressources naturelles et de la Faune, Direction de l’Environnement et de la Protection des Forets, 880 Chemin Ste-Foy, Quebec, Québec, G1S 4X4, Canada ORCID ID:E-mail:

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