Decadal Drought Effects on Endangered Woodpecker Habitat


The critically endangered ivory-billed woodpecker apparently has been rediscovered in old-growth bald cypress and swamp tupelo forests of Bayou DeView, located seven kilometers northwest of Brinkley, AR. The evaluation of the impact of drought on forest history and wildlife population levels is critical to the conservation of the ivory-billed woodpecker and other similarly endangered species. Tree ring chronologies have been developed from old-growth forests at Bayou DeView to aid in this assessment.

This article also describes a conceptual model that has proven useful for the discovery of other noncommercial old-growth cypress-tupelo remnants in the Southeast. These relict cypress-tupelo stands may be candidates for conservation, restoration, and perhaps the eventual reintroduction of the ivory bill and other increasingly rare species native to this ecosystem.

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