As remote sensing mapping products representing important habitat components increase in availability, detail, and accuracy, new opportunities arise to map predicted habitat for forest species of conservation concern. One such species is the Lewis's woodpecker which is a species of conservation interest in multiple states and throughout its range in British Columbia, Canada with habitat loss and degradation proposed as contributing factors in the species decline. The purpose of this study was to model and map Lewis's woodpecker nesting habitat using primary (directly derived) and secondary (modeled using ground calibration data) remote sensing products, as well as contribute to the knowledge of nesting ecology for the species in a source habitat type. We found promise in the utility of lidar and Landsat time series modeled snag and shrub products in conjunction with additional lidar structure and topographic metrics for predicting nesting habitat for the Lewis's woodpecker across a post-fire landscape. Our selected model had a percent correctly classified rate of 83.3% and contained additional variables (variability in canopy cover and topographic slope) to those included in the Fish and Wildlife Service habitat suitability model (HSM) for the species (canopy cover, shrub cover, and density of large snags). We were able to apply the remote sensing products to map realized habitat relationships for this species of conservation concern in an identified source habitat type, providing a potential resource for local scale conservation and management efforts and adding to the regional knowledge of habitat selection for the Lewis's woodpecker.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
Acknowledgments Our research was funded by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, Carbon Cycle Program (NASA Grant 10-CARBON10-45). We thank our field technicians for assisting in data collection.
© 2016 by the Northwest Scientific Association. All rights reserved.
- Lewis's woodpecker
- nesting habitat
- remote sensing