Forest management under uncertainty for multiple bird population objectives

Conference held March 20-24, 2002, Asilomar, California PDF on file: 6514_Moore.pdf
By: , and 
Edited by: C. John Ralph and Terrell D. Rich



We advocate adaptive programs of decision making and monitoring for the management of forest birds when responses by populations to management, and particularly management trade-offs among populations, are uncertain. Models are necessary components of adaptive management. Under this approach, uncertainty about the behavior of a managed system is explicitly captured in a set of alternative models. The models generate testable predictions about the response of populations to management, and monitoring data provide the basis for assessing these predictions and informing future management decisions. To illustrate these principles, we examine forest management at the Piedmont National Wildlife Refuge, where management attention is focused on the recovery of the Red-cockaded Woodpecker (Picoides borealis) population. However, managers are also sensitive to the habitat needs of many non-target organisms, including Wood Thrushes (Hylocichla mustelina) and other forest interior Neotropical migratory birds. By simulating several management policies on a set of-alternative forest and bird models, we found a decision policy that maximized a composite response by woodpeckers and Wood Thrushes despite our complete uncertainty regarding system behavior. Furthermore, we used monitoring data to update our measure of belief in each alternative model following one cycle of forest management. This reduction of uncertainty translates into a reallocation of model influence on the choice of optimal decision action at the next decision opportunity.

Additional publication details

Publication type Book chapter
Publication Subtype Book Chapter
Title Forest management under uncertainty for multiple bird population objectives
Year Published 2005
Language English
Publisher U. S. Forest Service, Pacific Southwest Research Station
Publisher location Albany, California
Contributing office(s) Patuxent Wildlife Research Center
Description 2 volumes: xiv, 1296
Larger Work Type Book
Larger Work Subtype Other Government Series
Larger Work Title Bird Conservation Implementation and Integration in the Americas: Proceedings of the Third International Partners in Flight Conference 2002
First page 373
Last page 380