Forest Investment Account

Abstract of FIA Project 4032009

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Effects of forest removal on marten in a deciduous-dominated forest.

Author(s): Poole, Kim G.; Porter, Aswea D.; Maundrell, Chris; Grindal, Scott D.; de Vries, Andrew
Imprint: Nelson, B.C. : Aurora Wildlife Research, 2002
Subject: Populus Tremuloides, American Marten, Forest Investment Account (FIA)
Series: Forest Investment Account (FIA) - Land Base Investment Program


American marten (Martes americana) are generally considered to be reliant upon, and most successful in, continuous late-successional coniferous forests. Young seral forest and deciduous dominated forests are generally considered to the low quality marten habitat, primarily a result of insufficient structure and overhead cover and lower prey populations. This study examined a moderately high-density population of marten in north-eastern British Columbia in what appeared to be comparatively low quality, deciduous-dominated habitat; overgrown agricultural land primarily consisting of 30-40 yr. old stands of regenerating aspen (Populus tremuloides). Over 4 years 52 radio-collared marten were monitored. The population appeared to be stable, as indicated by large numbers of adults, relatively consistent densities, long term residency of many individuals, low mortality rates, and older age structure. Relatively small home ranges implied good habitat quality and prey availability. Shearing, removal of immature forest cover, of 17% of the study area resulted in home arrange shifts at the individual level but no detectable impact at the population level. Marten avoided not-forested habitats and preferred mature coniferous stands but otherwise appeared to use all forested habitats relative to their availability, including extensive use of deciduous dominated areas and deciduous stands greater than 40 years of age. These habitats appear to have sufficient structure, prey and overhead cover to maintain moderate densities of marten on a sustained basis.

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Updated July 25, 2006 

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