Optimal management of a flammable multi-stand forest for timber production and maintenance of nesting sites for wildlife

Daniel A. Spring, John Kennedy, David B. Lindenmayer, Michael McCarthy, Ralph MAC NALLY

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

16 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Decline of cavity-using wildlife species is a major forest management issue. One of the causes of this problem is the loss in cavity tree abundance, resulting from short rotation silviculture, stand-replacing disturbance events and timber harvesting in disturbed stands. Cavity tree availability cannot be guaranteed due to the stochastic nature of disturbance events. We developed a Markov model to predict future cavity tree availability under alternative tree felling and fire protection strategies using information on cavity tree dynamics and fire history. Stochastic dynamic programming was used to find a strategy thatmaximizes timber revenues less forest management costs, including the cost of an artificial nest-box program that must be implemented whenever cavity trees become critically scarce. The requirement to implement a nest-box program in such circumstances strongly influenced the optimal tree felling strategy and resulted in a higher probability of having cavity trees in the future. This reflected an increase in the retention of old growth forest and stands with fire-killed cavity trees as well as stands of younger trees to provide a future source of cavities. These results demonstrate the need to consider the costs of artificial habitat enhancement and the risk of future cavity tree scarcity in multiple-use forest management planning.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3857-3865
Number of pages9
JournalForest Ecology and Management
Volume255
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2008
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

tree cavities
forestry production
timber production
nesting sites
forest stands
wildlife
cavity
forest management
nest boxes
felling
nest box
multiple use forestry
dynamic programming
silviculture
old-growth forests
cost
artificial nest
disturbance
logging
fire history

Cite this

Spring, Daniel A. ; Kennedy, John ; Lindenmayer, David B. ; McCarthy, Michael ; MAC NALLY, Ralph. / Optimal management of a flammable multi-stand forest for timber production and maintenance of nesting sites for wildlife. In: Forest Ecology and Management. 2008 ; Vol. 255. pp. 3857-3865.
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Optimal management of a flammable multi-stand forest for timber production and maintenance of nesting sites for wildlife. / Spring, Daniel A.; Kennedy, John; Lindenmayer, David B.; McCarthy, Michael; MAC NALLY, Ralph.

In: Forest Ecology and Management, Vol. 255, 2008, p. 3857-3865.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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