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Title: Using Wildlife Species Richness to Identify Land Protection Priorities in California's Hardwood Woodlands

Author: Motroni, Robert S.; Airola, Daniel A.; Ma rose, Robin K.; Tosta, Nancy D.;

Date: 1991

Source: In: Standiford, Richard B., tech. coord. 1991. Proceedings of the symposium on oak woodlands and hardwood rangeland management; October 31 - November 2, 1990; Davis, California. Gen. Tech. Rep. PSW-GTR-126. Berkeley, CA: Pacific Southwest Research Station, Forest Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture; p. 110-119

Publication Series: General Technical Report (GTR)

   Note: This article is part of a larger document. View the larger document

Description: A geographic information system was used to assess wildlife species richness (number of species) in valley-foothill hardwood habitats throughout California to set priorities for conservation attention. Species richness values were assessed and compared using three methods: one that included all species without considering canopy cover conditions and species preferences; a second that restricted the analysis to sensitive species; and a third that used sensitive species and considered canopy cover conditions and species canopy preferences. The identified locations of species rich areas were markedly altered with the inclusion of information on habitat structure and species sensitivity. Comparison of different species richness analyses showed that the greatest difference in areas identified in richness classes was produced when species sensitivity and canopy closure requirements were included. The largest areas of high species richness were in the southern Sierra Nevada foothills. Valley foothill hardwood habitat is not well represented in reserved areas. Only 3.8 percent of a total 4.5 million acres were classified as reserved by virtue of ownership. Similarly, only 4.5 percent of the 1.1 million acres in the highest species richness class was reserved. Areas of sparse canopy closure supported the most species. Selecting conservation areas based solely on species richness would, however, omit species that favor or are restricted to denser canopy closure classes. Ensuring protection of the maximum number of species requires examining the distribution, size, and species composition of species rich areas identified. Site specific considerations are essential as a second step in the ranking of local habitats for management or protection.

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Motroni, Robert S.; Airola, Daniel A.; Ma rose, Robin K.; Tosta, Nancy D. 1991. Using Wildlife Species Richness to Identify Land Protection Priorities in California''s Hardwood Woodlands. In: Standiford, Richard B., tech. coord. 1991. Proceedings of the symposium on oak woodlands and hardwood rangeland management; October 31 - November 2, 1990; Davis, California. Gen. Tech. Rep. PSW-GTR-126. Berkeley, CA: Pacific Southwest Research Station, Forest Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture; p. 110-119

 


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