Skip to page content
USDA Forest Service
  
Treesearch

Research & Development Treesearch

 
Treesearch Home
About Treesearch
Contact Us
Research & Development
Forest Products Lab
International Institute of Tropical Forestry
Northern
Pacific Northwest
Pacific Southwest
Rocky Mountain
Southern
Help
 

GeoTreesearch


Science.gov - We Participate


USA.gov  Government Made Easy


Global Forest Information Service

US Forest Service
P.O. Box 96090
Washington, D.C.
20090-6090

(202) 205-8333

You are here: Home / Search / Publication Information
Bookmark and Share

Publication Information

(0 bytes)

Title: Resting structures and resting habitat of fishers in the southern Sierra Nevada, California

Author: Purcell, Kathryn L.; Mazzoni, Amie K.; Mori, Sylvia R.; Boroski, Brian B.

Date: 2009

Source: Forest Ecology and Management 258(12): 2696-2706

Publication Series: Journal/Magazine Article (JRNL)

Description: The fisher (Martes pennanti) is a forest mustelid endemic to North America that has experienced range reductions in Pacific states that have led to their listing under the Endangered Species Act as warranted but precluded by higher priorities. The viability of the southern Sierra Nevada fisher population is of particular concern due to its reduced historical range, isolated nature, and low genetic variability. We located resting structures of radio-collared fishers in the southern Sierra Nevada and compared resting and available habitat to examine selection for specific features of resting sites. Resting structures provide protection from predators and unfavorable weather and are believed to be the most limiting habitat element across fisher home ranges. Resting structures were found primarily in live trees (76%) and snags (15%). Trees used by fishers for resting were among the largest available and frequently had mistletoe infestations. Ponderosa pines (Pinus ponderosa) were used more often than expected and incense cedars (Calocedrus decurrens) less than expected. Snags were also large and in fairly advanced stages of decay. Habitat at fisher resting sites had higher canopy cover, greater basal area of snags and hardwoods, and smaller and more variable tree sizes compared to random sites. Resting sites were also found on steeper slopes and closer to streams. Canopy cover was consistently the most important variable distinguishing rest and random sites. In western North America, fishers are generally associated with late-successional forests, but changes in these forests due to logging and fire suppression have resulted in a transition to forest stands characterized by fewer large trees and more small stems. These conditions are consistent with our finding that the large rest structures were surrounded by smaller than average trees. Management practices that support the growth and retention of greater numbers of large trees and snags, while maintaining a minimum of 61% (based on moosehorn) or 56% (generated via Forest Vegetation Simulator) canopy cover and a complex horizontal and vertical forest structure, can improve and provide for future fisher habitat.

Keywords: Fisher, Habitat selection, Martes pennanti, Resting habitat, Resting structures, Sierra Nevada

Publication Notes:

  • We recommend that you also print this page and attach it to the printout of the article, to retain the full citation information.
  • This article was written and prepared by U.S. Government employees on official time, and is therefore in the public domain.

XML: View XML

Citation:


Purcell, Kathryn L.; Mazzoni, Amie K.; Mori, Sylvia R.; Boroski, Brian B. 2009. Resting structures and resting habitat of fishers in the southern Sierra Nevada, California. Forest Ecology and Management 258(12): 2696-2706.

 


 [ Get Acrobat ]  Get the latest version of the Adobe Acrobat reader or Acrobat Reader for Windows with Search and Accessibility

USDA logo which links to the department's national site. Forest Service logo which links to the agency's national site.