Derek posted this in a comment but it deserves its own post..these are “interior” specialists, who apparently do better at points of their lives in openings..
Here is a link to Bob Berwyn’s post and some quotes from him..
Currently, most of those conservation efforts focus on preserving mature forests where birds breed, but the new research shows younger forest habitat may be vital in the weeks leading up to migration.
“Humans have really changed the nature of mature forests in the Northeast,” said Scott Stoleson, a research wildlife biologist at the U.S. Forest Service’s Northern Research Station. “Natural processes that once created open spaces even within mature forests, such as fire, are largely controlled, diminishing the availability of quality habitat.
Below are some excerpts from the Science Daily article.
The study suggests that declines in forest-interior species may be due in part to the increasing maturity and homogenization of forests. Openings created by timber harvesting may increase habitat for some forest interior birds, according to Stoleson. “Humans have really changed the nature of mature forests in the Northeast,” Stoleson said. “Natural processes that once created open spaces even within mature forests, such as fire, are largely controlled, diminishing the availability of quality habitat.”
In 217 days of netting birds over the course of the 4-year study, Stoleson netted and banded a total of 3,845 individuals. Of these, 2,021 individuals representing 46 species were in the postbreeding stage, based on physiological criteria. Of these, 33 percent were mature-forest specialists, 22 percent were forest-edge species, and the remaining 45 percent were early-successional specialists. All 46 species were captured in cuts, but only 29 species were captured within forest.
Just a reminder that “science” is a function of what is looked at, at what place, species and spatial scale, and our knowledge is only provisional. It seems like this is sometimes forgotten and we expect more than “science” can deliver.