Structure of bird communities in eucalyptus plantations: nestedness as a pattern of species distribution.

Brazilian journal of biology = Revista brasleira de biologia

PubMedID: 27097097

Jacoboski LI, Mendonça-Lima A, Hartz SM. Structure of bird communities in eucalyptus plantations: nestedness as a pattern of species distribution. Braz J Biol. 2016;.
Replacement of native habitats by tree plantations has increased dramatically in Brazil, resulting in loss of structural components for birds, such as appropriate substrates for foraging and nesting. Tree plantations can also reduce faunal richness and change the composition of bird species. This study evaluated the structure of avian communities in eucalyptus plantations of different ages and in a native forest. We classified species as habitat specialists or generalists, and assessed if the species found in eucalyptus plantations are a subset of the species that occur in the native forest. Forty-one sampling sites were evaluated, with three point counts each, in a native forest and in eucalyptus plantations of four different ages. A total of 71 bird species were identified. Species richness and abundance were higher in the native forest, reflecting the greater heterogeneity of the habitat. The composition of bird species also differed between the native forest and plantations. The species recorded in the plantations represented a subset of the species of the native forest, with a predominance of generalist species. These species are more tolerant of habitat changes and are able to use the plantations. The commercial plantations studied here can serve as a main or occasional habitat for these generalists, especially for those that are semi-dependent on edge and forest. The bird species most affected by silviculture are those that are typical of open grasslands, and those that are highly dependent on well-preserved forests.