Spring Bird Community Comparisons of Montane Walnut Plantation and Natural Forests in Western Yunnan, China
Commercial plantation is rapidly expanding in the developing countries, and yet we currently have a poor understanding of the value of these human-dominated forest landscapes for biodiversity conservation. Bird communities and vegetation structure in walnut plantation and nearby natural forests were surveyed respectively in Yunlong county and Yongping county of Dali Bai Autonomous Prefecture in 2015 spring. A total 88 species were recorded in all 60 points by point count method, with 54 species recorded in the natural forests, 14 species in walnut plantation, and 20 species shared in both forests. Bird species richness and abundance in walnut plantation were less than that of corresponding natural forests for both sites. Bird community composition in walnut forests and corresponding natural forests were totally different, with more difference occurring in Yongping county. Compared with the bird species in natural forests, common birds and non-forest interior species had a higher probability of occurrence in walnut forests. Three species of national class Ⅱ protected birds and special birds, such as frugivores, woodpeckers and most babblers, were only recorded in natural forests. Canonical correspondence analysis indicated that bird species were significantly associated with native tree canopy cover and understory liana cover. Native trees and affiliated understory was important to bird habitat conservation. Our study showed that the bird richness and abundance in walnut plantation was lower than that in natural forest, even when the plantation is closely adjacent to the natural forest, which indicated limited values in biodiversity conservation in walnut plantation. We provided management strategies to improve bird conservation within walnut plantations in Yunnan province.
2016,35(6): 918-927 收稿日期：2016-08-17
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