William C. Mccomb

Response of Forest Birds to an Improvement Cut in Kentucky

Wildlife Outstanding Technical Paper

An improvement cut that removed commercially low-quality trees from an unmanaged 20-ha, 60-year-old, mixed mesophytic forest in Kentucky reduced the availability of cavities, snags, and small seeds. Stand basal area was reduced from 21 to 17 m2/ha. The abundance of primary and secondary cavity-using birds, as well as neotropical, migrant songbirds, was not affected severely by the cut. Both winter and breeding populations of primary cavity-using birds, breeding great crested flycatchers (Myiarchus crinitus), tufted titmice (Parus hicolor), and Carolina wrens (Thryothorus ludovicianus) were...


Habitat at Ruffed Grouse Capture Sites in Kentucky

Habitat structure and composition were measured at 51 ruffed grouse (Bonasa umbellus) trap sites in a mixed-mesophytic forest in eastern Kentucky. High midstory stem density, low herbaceous stem density, high abundance of dead wood at ground level, and high abundance of evergreen herbs, greenbriars (Smilax spp.), and pines (Pinus spp.) contributed significantly to prediction of ruffed grouse captures. A discriminant model was tested on independent data and correctly classified 70% of 50 capture sites but misclassified 60% of 48 non-capture sites as capture sites. Nineteen of 23 sites that...


Bird Abundance and Cavity Use 25 Years After Timber Stand Improvement

Relative abundance of birds and cavity use by vertebrates were determined on 2 20-ha sites in a mature, second-growth Appalachian forest. One site received timber stand improvement (TSI) by tree girdling 25 years prior to measurement, and the other site did not receive TSI. Although snag density, animal-created cavity density, tree density, and tree basal area were higher on the TSI site than on the control, there were few differences in the relative abundance of birds between sites. Whitebreasted nuthatches (Sitta carolinensis) and wood thrushes (Hylocichla mustelina) were more abundant...


Habitat Associations of Birds and Mammals in an Appalachian Forest

Relative abundance of small birds and mammals was determined on 18 0.4-ha plots in a mature, second-growth central Appalachian forest. Habitat heterogeneity had been increased by clearcutting and herbicide application on ridge-top, and south- and north-facing slopes 4 years prior to sampling. Areas with low basal area and high midstory cover provided the best habitat for white-footed mice (Peromyseus leueopus) and golden mice (Ochrotomys nuttalli). Areas with high basal area and low understory density provided the best habitat for ovenbirds (Seiurus aurocapillus) and red-eyed vireos (Vireo...


Habitat Characteristics of Forest Clearings Created by Picloram Herbicides and Clearcutting

Twenty-six habitat characteristics were quantified on untreated, clearcut, and picloram-treated plots on north-facing, south-facing, and ridgetop sites in eastern Kentucky. Twenty-one habitat characteristics differed among treatments and 13 characteristics differed among aspects. Herbicide plots were intermediate between untreated and clearcut plots in 15 characteristics. Hard and some soft mast species and browse species were adversely affected by increasing concentrations of herbicide, but snag and log abundance were increased by herbicide application. Hard mast species composition,...


Small Mammal And Bird Use Of Some Unmanaged And Managed Forest Stands In The Mid-South

Small mammal and bird commumtles were compared between uncut and improvement cut stands in bottomland hardwoods and upland pine-harrlwoods. Uncut plots were compared between riverfront hardwoods and a nearby cottonwood (Populus deltoides) plantation. More (225%) small mammal captures were made on cut plots in bottomland hardwoods than on uncut plots. Small mammals were captured more frequently than expected on ridge sites in bottomland hardwoods. Captures increased 143 percent following cutting in upland hardwoods, but captures were not different between riverfront hardwoods and a...