|This study was carried out in TFL30 with the objectives to determine: 1) habitat use by a selected number of animal species (moose, furbearers & woodpeckers) along transects inhabited by American marten; and 2) species richness across successional stages. Nine transects were inventoried from 8 December 2005 to February 2006. A total of 501 animal tracks were recorded: 13 American marten, 9 fisher, 32 weasel, 1 wolverine, 9 lynx, 6 coyote, 3 wolf, 250 squirrel, 110 snowshoe hare, and 68 moose tracks. Marten and squirrel tracks, woodpecker signs, and observations of a late-successional bird complex (pileated and three-toed woodpeckers, red crossbill, brown creeper, mountain chickadee, and red-breasted nuthatch) were significantly (P < 0.05) more abundant than expected in excellent-quality marten polygons, which corresponded to old-growth forests. In contrast, tracks of moose, a species associated with younger forests, were significantly less abundant (P > 0.05) than expected in these polygons. The number of species was greater in excellent-quality marten polygons. This first year of research on species diversity in marten polygons was successful in demonstrating that these polygons may be used in forest management plans to maintain late-successional biodiversity, and to identify key areas such as old-growth management areas and wildlife tree patches. In the light of this year’s success, it is recommended to repeat this study next year in other transects in order to increase sample size and further our understanding of marten-biodiversity relationships.|
by Gilbert Proulx.