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Georgia Journal of Science

Abstract

Evaluating intensity and effects of land use disturbance is difficult, espe­cially in sites with multiple land use. We conducted point counts to deter­mine if abundance of bird species could be used to assess military train­ing and forestry management practices at Fort Benning, Georgia. We evaluated heavy and light use sites in the 1st growing season after pre­scribed fire and in the 3rd growing season postfire. Results focus on species common to early successional habitats and pine-grasslands and on forest species and habitat generalists. In the 3rd growing season post­fire, Indigo buntings (Passerino cyanea) and northern bobwhites (Colinus virginianus) were more abundant in recently burned heavy use sites than in light use sites. Conversely, red-eyed vireos (Vireo olivaceus) were more abundant in light use sites in the 3rd growing season postfire than in recently burned, heavy use sites. Further study could help determine if these species are indicators of disturbance.

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