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Local, Short-term Effects of Forest Harvesting on Breeding Waterfowl and Common Loon in Forest-Dominated Landscapes of Quebec

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Lemelin, Louis-Vincent, Imbeau, Louis, Darveau, Marcel et Bordage, Daniel (2007). Local, Short-term Effects of Forest Harvesting on Breeding Waterfowl and Common Loon in Forest-Dominated Landscapes of Quebec. Avian Conservation and Ecology , 2 (2). p. 10. Repéré dans Depositum à https://depositum.uqat.ca/id/eprint/1044

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Résumé

Northern forests are major breeding habitats for several waterfowl and other waterbird species. In Quebec, as in many other areas within the boreal region, clear-cut logging is an important human activity, and it is likely to affect ground- and cavity-nesting species differently. We used Black Duck Joint Venture/Canadian Wildlife Service aerial survey data, together with Quebec digital forest maps, to investigate local, i.e., within 2 km of clear-cut areas, short-term (~ 4 yr) effects of forest harvesting on waterfowl and Common Loon. Our predictions were that clear-cut logging would not affect ground nesters, but would negatively affect pair settling patterns in cavity nesters through nesting habitat disturbance. Our study spanned a 540,000-km² territory in which we considered over 30,000 ha of clear-cut areas that were dispersed into 42 different locations. We controlled for interannual variation in population size by comparing the pre- and post-harvest percentages of potentially hospitable nesting cover disturbed by timber harvesting within a 1-km radius of indicated breeding pairs. Our results suggest that timber harvesting positively influenced local populations of Canada Goose and American Green-winged Teal. No other ground-nesting species showed a significant response. For the cavity-nesting guild and species, we detected no local, short-term effect of clear-cutting. This result was unexpected because many previous studies of nest-box provisioning reported increased breeding pair densities, indicating that availability of natural holes may limit cavity-nesting duck populations. Moreover, because cavity-nesting ducks are considered among the most vulnerable bird species to forest management, our results are consistent with the hypothesis that boreal bird populations exhibit some resilience to disturbance. This conclusion follows from a study in landscapes where forests were mostly first-growth. It is not evident that it will remain valid following subsequent clear-cutting episodes and long-term forestry.

Type de document: Article
Mots-clés libres: boreal; breeding; cavity nesters; clear-cut; forest harvesting; ground nesters; nest site; population size; Quebec; waterfowl
Divisions: Forêts
Sciences appliquées
Date de dépôt: 21 avr. 2020 19:12
Dernière modification: 20 mai 2020 13:43
URI: https://depositum.uqat.ca/id/eprint/1044

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