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Document Description
TitleMammalian abundance in riparian and adjacent terrestrial habitats prior to and immediately following forest harvesting in the Copper Lake watershed, Newfoundland
AuthorForsey, Elizabeth Susan, 1969-
DescriptionThesis (M. Sc.), Memorial University of Newfoundland, 1999. Biology
Pagination139 leaves : ill. (some col.), map
SubjectRiparian ecology--Effect of logging on--Newfoundland and Labrador--Copper Lake Region; Mammals--Effect of habitat modification on--Newfoundland and Labrador--Copper Lake Region; Mammals--Effect of logging on--Newfoundland and Labrador--Copper Lake Region; Logging--Environmental aspects--Newfoundland and Labrador--Copper Lake Region;
DegreeM. Sc.
Degree GrantorMemorial University of Newfoundland. Dept. of Biology
Spatial CoverageCanada--Newfoundland and Labrador--Copper Lake Region
NotesBibliography: p. 109-117
AbstractThe Copper Lake Buffer Zone Study was initiated in 1994 to evaluate the effects of forest harvesting practices on mammalian, avian and piscine assemblages in a small watershed. This portion of the Copper Lake study evaluates mammalian abundance in riparian habitats both prior to and immediately following forest harvesting. Three headwater streams within the Copper Lake watershed received different harvesting treatments; i.e., harvested with no riparian buffer, harvested with a 20 m riparian buffer and not harvested (essentially a buffer of at least 100 m). The riparian habitats and adjacent interior forests on both sides of each stream were evaluated for mammal usage prior to and after harvesting. -- Summer trapping studies of small mammals, i.e., masked shrews (Sorex cinereus), meadow voles (Microtus pennsylvanicus) and deer mice (Peromyscus maniculatus), prior to harvesting indicated that these species were initially low in abundance. Shrew abundances showed a large increase in the summer of 199S in both harvested and unharvested study sites. Post-harvesting data from the summers of 1995 and 1996 indicated no noticeable, immediate effect of harvesting on S. cinereus when the clear-cut sites were compared to uncut sites. Within the 20 m buffers, however, shrew abundances were significantly higher than in the adjacent clear-cuts. Af. pennsylvanicus and P. maniculatus showed slight increases in harvested areas. The cyclical nature of such small mammal species may account, in part, for these increases, particularly since abundances were so low in 1994. -- Winter track data for other mammalian species, i.e., pine marten (Martes americana), weasel (Mustela erminea), red fox (Vulpes vulpes), snowshoe hare (Lepus americanus) and red squirrel (Tamiasciurus hudsordcus), indicated that prior to harvesting, winter activity was generally higher in the forest than at the stream edges. After harvesting occurred, I found that more activity occurred in residual patches of forest, including riparian buffers, than in the clear-cuts. Marten, hare and squirrel tracks were significantly more abundant on forested transects. No marten tracks were observed on the clear-cuts without a buffer, while track abundances increased on the uncut sites. The results of this study raise the question of whether a 20 m buffer is adequate to support increased competition for space and prey due to species packing, especially considering the low diversity and densities of small mammals in insular Newfoundland. This can also be compounded with the potential loss of buffer habitat over time due to tree blowdown.
Resource TypeElectronic thesis or dissertation
FormatImage/jpeg; Application/pdf
SourcePaper copy kept in the Centre for Newfoundland Studies, Memorial University Libraries
Local Identifiera1355764
RightsThe author retains copyright ownership and moral rights in this thesis. Neither the thesis nor substantial extracts from it may be printed or otherwise reproduced without the author's permission.
CollectionElectronic Theses and Dissertations
Scanning StatusCompleted
PDF File(17.53 MB) --
CONTENTdm file name149564.cpd