Retain wildlife corridors in logged areas
Overall effectiveness category Unknown effectiveness (limited evidence)
Number of studies: 2
Background information and definitions
Corridors are areas of habitat that are contiguous or isolated (i.e. linkages or stepping stones) that enable species to disperse and migrate through the landscape. In a managed forest environment, corridors may enable recolonization of isolated forest blocks. This intervention includes corridors of natural unharvested vegetation and of cover provided by arrangement of felling debris.
Supporting evidence from individual studies
A replicated study (year not stated) of forest at 49 sites in Victoria, Australia (Lindenmayer et al. 1993) found that linear corridors of unharvested trees retained after tree harvesting operations supported seven species of arboreal marsupial. From 402 tree hollows surveyed, 69 arboreal marsupials were recorded, at 54 trees. Greater glider Petauroides volans and mountain brushtail possum Trichosurus caninus were the most frequently recorded species, accounting for 78% of observations. Sites were chosen where forest had regrown for around 50 years, following wildfires in 1939, and then been felled years <4 years before mammal observations, but leaving a linear strip. Strips were 125–762 m long and had average widths of 30–264 m. Forty-three strips comprised Eucalyptus regnans stands and six were of Eucalyptus delegatensis. Strips had 1–29 trees with hollows. Marsupial occupation of tree hollows was determined by direct observations.Study and other actions tested
Referenced paperLindenmayer D.B., Cunningham R.B. & Donnelly C.F. (1993) The conservation of arboreal marsupials in the montane ash forests of the Central Highlands of Victoria, south-east Australia, IV. The presence and abundance of arboreal marsupials in retained linear habitats (wildlife corridors) within logged forest. Biological Conservation, 66, 207-221.
A replicated, controlled study in 2010–2012 of forest at three sites in British Colombia, Canada (Sullivan & Sullivan 2014) found that following tree harvesting, rows of woody debris connected to adjacent forest were not used more by red-backed voles Myodes gapperi than were isolated rows of woody debris. The average number of voles/trapping session in rows of woody debris attached to forest (9.0) did not differ from the number in those that were isolated (9.3). However, both had more voles than did unharvested forest (4.4). Seventeen plots were spread across three sites of 42–47 ha extent. Eight plots contained rows of woody debris attached to forest edge, six had isolated woody debris rows in clearcut areas and three were unharvested mature or old-growth forest. Plots averaged 0.23–0.40 km apart. Rows of woody debris averaged 136–344 m long, 1–3 m high and 6–9 m diameter or width. Felling and establishment of rows of woody debris occurred in autumn 2009. Voles were sampled using Longworth live traps, at 4-week intervals (two sites) or 4–8-week intervals (one site), from May to October 2010–2012. Traps were set for one day and two nights each time.Study and other actions tested