chris kirkpatrick & courtney j. conway usgs arizona cooperative fish and wildlife

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Changes in the breeding distribution of Buff-breasted Flycatchers in the southwestern United States: the role of fire suppression. Chris Kirkpatrick & Courtney J. Conway USGS Arizona Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit, University of Arizona. Pablo Leautaud. Thanks to:. - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

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  • Changes in the breeding distribution of Buff-breasted Flycatchers in the southwestern United States: the role of fire suppression. Chris Kirkpatrick & Courtney J. Conway USGS Arizona Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit, University of Arizona

  • Pablo Leautaud

  • Thanks to:Field Assistants: Dominic LaRoche, Mike Schroff, Eli Rose, Kelly Bergstram, Brian Powell, and Mark Zepp Logistical Support: Natasha Kline, Don Swann (Saguaro National Park), Josh Taiz (U.S. Forest Service), Bob Peterson (University of Arizona), Shelly Danzer, and Sheridan Stone (U.S. Department of Defense)Bird Photography: Bruce Taubert and Tom Grey

  • Empidonax fulvifrons

  • ArizonaNew Mexicofrom Bowers & Dunning (1994)

  • from Conway and Kirkpatrick 2007

  • 91% reduction in U.S. breeding rangefrom Conway and Kirkpatrick 2007

  • 99% reduction in U.S. breeding range

  • ArizonaNew Mexico15% reduction in total breeding rangefrom Bowers & Dunning (1994)

  • 9 highest sky island mtn rangesWhat is current population trajectory?

  • 71 surveys in Huachucas & Chiricahuas

  • 44 surveys in 7 adjacent mt. ranges Replicated 1980-83 & 1995-96 surveys

  • At 200 m intervals along each survey route

    From April to July

    3-min. passive period

    3-min. broadcast period

    Point-count surveys

  • Regress year vs # BBFLs for 23 routes Test Ho: average slope 0# BBFLs Detected

  • bavg = -0.105P = 0.061 BBFLs have declined on 16 of 23 routes# BBFLs Detected

  • bavg = -0.105P = 0.061 BBFLs have declined on 16 of 23 routesCarr Canyon # BBFLs Detected

  • Whats happened to BBFLs in the U.S.?Fire suppression implicated

  • Coniferous forests in the SW historically subjected to low-severity fires ~1x/decade

    From Swetnam and Betancourt 2003

  • 1909

    1949

    1992From Covington and Moore 1994

  • Increase in understory fuel loads has contributed to recent increase in frequency of wildfires in Southwestfrom Swetnam and Betancourt 2003Recent Fires

  • If observed declines in BBFLs are due to decreased fire frequency, then.

    1) Recently burned forests more likely to be colonized by BBFLs

    2) Survey points with BBFLs more likely to have evidence of recent fires

    3) Survey points with BBFLs more likely to have evidence of more frequent fire events

  • If observed declines in BBFLs are due to decreased fire frequency, then.

    1) Recently burned forests more likely to be colonized by BBFLs

    2) Survey points with BBFLs more likely to have evidence of recent fires

    3) Survey points with BBFLs more likely to have evidence of more frequent fire events

  • 5 recently burned survey routes no BBFLsdetected1 pair of BBFLsdetected5 unburned survey routes

  • Potential Problems:

    Severity of fires was lowSample size of survey routes was small

  • If observed declines in BBFLs are due to decreased fire frequency, then.

    1) Recently burned forests more likely to be colonized by BBFLs

    2) Survey points with BBFLs more likely to have evidence of recent fires

    3) Survey points with BBFLs more likely to have evidence of more frequent fire events

  • 012340) no evidence of fire low-severity surface fire moderate-severity surface fire high-severity surface fire high-severity crown fire Modified from Ryan & Noste 1985Burn Severity Index (5 classes):

  • Buff-breasted flycatchers more common in burned woodlands

  • Percent cover of vegetation at 4 heights differed among 5 burn-severity classesBurn-severity Class

  • 1) Burn-severity index provides information on severity but not frequency of previous fire eventsPotential Problem:

  • If observed declines in BBFLs are due to decreased fire frequency, then.

    1) Recently burned forests more likely to be colonized by BBFLs

    2) Survey points with BBFLs more likely to have evidence of recent fires

    3) Survey points with BBFLs more likely to have evidence of more frequent fire events

  • 1916 Fire1865 Fire1842 Fire14 survey routes with BBFLs14 survey routes without BBFLs

  • tpaired = 1.8P = 0.048Routes with BBFLs had more frequent fireswith BBFLswithout BBFLs

  • 1) not all trees scar during a fire2) dont know the severity of previous firesPotential Problems:

  • Summary of resultsFire severityFire frequency

  • Why didnt BBFLs colonize our 5 recently (10 years to locate and colonize burns

  • Why didnt BBFLs colonize our 5 recently (10 yrs post-burn?

  • MEXICO Conducted surveys in 7 mt. ranges adjacent to Huachucas & ChiricahuasLast BBFL recorded 18 Aug. 1911

    We detected:2 in 20004 in 20045 (incl. pair) in 2005

  • Whats driving BBFLs to re-colonize the Rincon Mountains after 89 year absence?70% of bird survey points burned (56% burned severely)Ignition PointsBurn PerimetersIgnitions and Fire History, Rincon Mountains, Saguaro National ParkMica MtRincon PeakTucson

  • Carr Canyon
  • Santa Catalina MountainsBullock Wildfire (2002) & Aspen Wildfire (2003)

  • Santa Catalina Mountains>90% burnedVariation in burn severity

  • Future workContinue monitoring BBFL populations in Arizona (and New Mexico?)

    Determine reproductive success to assess quality of habitat

    Determine status of Mexican population

  • For more information:Conway, C. J., and C. Kirkpatrick. 2007. Effect of forest fire suppression on buff-breasted flycatchers. Journal of Wildlife Management 71:445-457.

    Kirkpatrick, C., C. J. Conway, and D. LaRoche. 2007. Range expansion of the Buff-breasted Flycatcher (Empidonax fulvifrons) into the Rincon Mountains, Arizona. Southwestern Naturalist 52: 149-152.

    Kirkpatrick, C., C. J. Conway, and P. B. Jones. 2006. Distribution and relative abundance of forest birds in relation to burn severity in southeastern Arizona. Journal of Wildlife Management 70:1005-1012.

  • For more information:www.ag.arizona.edu/srnr/research/coop/azfwru/cjc/

    click on links to Researchand Past Project #8 and Past Project #9

    kirkpatr@email.arizona.edu

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