Index of Species Information

WILDLIFE SPECIES:  Sialia currucoides


Introductory

WILDLIFE SPECIES: Sialia currucoides
AUTHORSHIP AND CITATION : Sullivan, Janet. 1995. Sialia currucoides. In: Fire Effects Information System, [Online]. U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station, Fire Sciences Laboratory (Producer). Available: http://www.fs.fed.us/database/feis/ [].

ABBREVIATION : SICU COMMON NAMES : mountain bluebird TAXONOMY : The currently accepted scientific name of mountain bluebird is Sialia currucoides (Bechstein). There are no currently recognized subspecies [1,2]. The breeding ranges of mountain bluebird and western bluebird (S. mexicana) overlap extensively in the western United States. However, the two species are largely allopatric during the breeding season because of habitat preference [1,29]. A male mountain bluebird was observed paired with a female eastern bluebird (S. sialis) in Minnesota. Two young fledged from that nest [56], and another association of the same type produced four fledglings [6]. Mountain bluebirds and eastern bluebirds are also sympatric in South Dakota [45]. ORDER : Passeriformes CLASS : Bird FEDERAL LEGAL STATUS : See OTHER STATUS OTHER STATUS : Atwood [4] compiled state status lists for small western landbirds; of the western states, mountain bluebird was only listed by Colorado, and its status was "undetermined."


WILDLIFE DISTRIBUTION AND OCCURRENCE

WILDLIFE SPECIES: Sialia currucoides
GENERAL DISTRIBUTION : The breeding range of mountain bluebird extends from central Alaska, central Yukon Territory, southern Mackenzie District, southern Saskatchewan, and southwestern Manitoba; south along the eastern slopes of the Coast Ranges to northwestern and south-central California; and to central and southeastern Nevada, northern Arizona, southern New Mexico, western Oklahoma, Colorado, western Nebraska, North Dakota, and northeastern North Dakota [1]. Sightings of breeding mountain bluebirds (paired with eastern bluebirds) have been reported in Minnesota [6,56]. Mountain bluebirds winter from southern British Columbia and western Montana south to northern Baja California and neighboring islands, Sonora, southern Chihuahua, central Nuevo Leon, extreme southwestern Kansas, western Oklahoma, and western Texas. Occasional sightings in western and northern Arkansas and northern Manitoba have been reported [1]. Breeding mountain bluebirds have been sighted in Wisconsin [43]. Transient and winter resident mountain bluebirds have been reported in Vancouver, British Columbia [65]. ECOSYSTEMS : FRES11 Spruce-fir FRES15 Oak-hickory FRES17 Elm-ash-cottonwood FRES19 Aspen-birch FRES20 Douglas-fir FRES21 Ponderosa pine FRES22 Western white pine FRES23 Fir-spruce FRES24 Hemlock-Sitka spruce FRES25 Larch FRES26 Lodgepole pine FRES27 Redwood FRES28 Western hardwoods FRES29 Sagebrush FRES34 Chaparral-mountain shrub FRES36 Mountain grasslands FRES37 Mountain meadows FRES38 Plains grasslands STATES :
AK AZ AR CA CO ID KS MN MT NE
NV NM ND OK OR SD TX UT WA WI WY

AB BC MB NT SK YT

MEXICO
BLM PHYSIOGRAPHIC REGIONS : 1 Northern Pacific Border 2 Cascade Mountains 3 Southern Pacific Border 4 Sierra Mountains 5 Columbia Plateau 6 Upper Basin and Range 7 Lower Basin and Range 8 Northern Rocky Mountains 9 Middle Rocky Mountains 10 Wyoming Basin 11 Southern Rocky Mountains 12 Colorado Plateau 13 Rocky Mountain Piedmont 14 Great Plains 15 Black Hills Uplift 16 Upper Missouri Basin and Broken Lands KUCHLER PLANT ASSOCIATIONS : K001 Spruce-cedar-hemlock forest K002 Cedar-hemlock-Douglas-fir forest K003 Silver fir-Douglas-fir forest K004 Fir-hemlock forest K005 Mixed conifer forest K006 Redwood forest K007 Red fir forest K008 Lodgepole pine-subalpine forest K009 Pine-cypress forest K010 Ponderosa shrub forest K011 Western ponderosa forest K012 Douglas-fir forest K013 Cedar-hemlock-pine forest K014 Grand fir-Douglas-fir forest K015 Western spruce-fir forest K016 Eastern ponderosa forest K017 Black Hills pine forest K018 Pine-Douglas-fir forest K019 Arizona pine forest K020 Spruce-fir-Douglas-fir forest K021 Southwestern spruce-fir forest K022 Great Basin pine forest K023 Juniper-pinyon woodland K024 Juniper steppe woodland K025 Alder-ash forest K026 Oregon oakwoods K027 Mesquite bosque K029 California mixed evergreen forest K030 California oakwoods K031 Oak-juniper woodlands K032 Transition between K031 and K037 K033 Chaparral K034 Montane chaparral K038 Great Basin sagebrush K055 Sagebrush steppe K056 Wheatgrass-needlegrass shrubsteppe K095 Great Lakes pine forest SAF COVER TYPES : 1 Jack pine 5 Balsam fir 16 Aspen 21 Eastern white pine 22 White pine-hemlock 51 White pine-chestnut oak 208 Whitebark pine 210 Interior Douglas-fir 211 White fir 212 Western larch 213 Grand fir 217 Aspen 218 Lodgepole pine 220 Rocky Mountain juniper 229 Pacific Douglas-fir 230 Douglas-fir-western hemlock 237 Interior ponderosa pine 238 Western juniper 243 Sierra Nevada mixed conifer 244 Pacific ponderosa pine-Douglas-fir 245 Pacific ponderosa pine 247 Jeffrey pine 250 Blue oak-foothills pine 255 California coast live oak SRM (RANGELAND) COVER TYPES : 104 Antelope bitterbrush-bluebunch wheatgrass 105 Antelope bitterbrush-Idaho fescue 107 Western juniper/big sagebrush/bluebunch wheatgrass 109 Ponderosa pine shrubland 110 Ponderosa pine-grassland 201 Blue oak woodland 202 Coast live oak woodland 207 Scrub oak mixed chaparral 314 Big sagebrush-bluebunch wheatgrass 315 Big sagebrush-Idaho fescue 316 Big sagebrush-rough fescue 322 Curlleaf mountain-mahogany-bluebunch wheatgrass 409 Tall forb 411 Aspen woodland PLANT COMMUNITIES : Mountain bluebird occurs in several vegetative communities and is the most ecologically tolerant of the three bluebird species. In most communities, areas with snags (standing dead trees) are preferred over snagless areas. In western North Dakota's Little Missouri National Grasslands, mountain bluebirds were summer residents (mean density 2.3 pairs per 100 acres [2.3/40 ha]) in ash (Fraxinus spp.) woodlands but not in cottonwood (Populus spp.), juniper (Juniperus spp.), or pine woodlands. The ash woodlands were in upland draws surrounded by prairie with dense shrubs on the edges [31]. Mountain bluebirds have been observed in nearly treeless areas of the South Dakota Badlands [45]. In the Black Hills mountain bluebirds occupy nesting areas in ponderosa pine (P. ponderosa) woodlands [45]. In southeastern British Columbia mountain bluebirds were present on shrub plots within dry Douglas-fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii) forests; a small number was present in very young conifer stands [51]. In Montana mountain bluebirds are present in the Douglas-fir-ponderosa pine zone and in the cedar (Thuja spp.)-hemlock (Tsuga spp.)-spruce (Picea spp.)-grand fir (Abies grandis) zone of the Kootenai National Forest [23]. They are also present in whitebark pine (Pinus albicaulis) stands [40]. In northern Utah breeding mountain bluebirds used clearcut quaking aspen (Populus tremuloides) sites [15]. In central Nevada mountain bluebirds were present in the interface between the aspen (Populus spp.)-white fir (Abies concolor) zone and the upper big sagebrush (Artemisia tridentata)-grass zone [42]. In west-central Colorado mountain bluebirds were observed in aspen-dominated stands [53]. Mountain bluebirds were present in west-central Colorado in severely burned lodgepole pine (Pinus contorta) stands with standing dead trees [49]. In Arizona mountain bluebirds were active nesters in old-growth ponderosa pine at approximately 8,500 feet (2,591 m) elevation [52]. Bent [8] compiled the following reports of mountain bluebird breeding habitat: During the breeding season mountain bluebirds are usually found above 7,000 feet (2,133 m) elevation in Utah, Colorado, northern New Mexico, and Arizona where aspen (Populus spp.) groves alternate with burned pine (Pinus spp.) forests with abundant snags. In the Sangre de Cristo Mountains of New Mexico, breeding mountain bluebirds occurred in open quaking aspen groves at 10,300 feet (3,139 m) elevation; mountain bluebird families have been seen up to 12,300 feet (3,749 m) elevation. REFERENCES : NO-ENTRY

BIOLOGICAL DATA AND HABITAT REQUIREMENTS

WILDLIFE SPECIES: Sialia currucoides
TIMING OF MAJOR LIFE HISTORY EVENTS : Spring Migration: Mountain bluebirds and western bluebirds arrive in south-central Washington at the same time of year (February to March) in mixed flocks with approximately equal sex ratios [29]. Power [46] however, reported that males usually arrive on Montana breeding grounds first, from only few days to as many as 30 days before the females. The median arrival date for males was April 8; for females, April 25 [46]. In southwestern Manitoba mountain bluebirds usually arrive in late March [37]. In Zion National Park mountain bluebirds are summer residents above 8,000 feet (2,438 m) elevation but move to lower elevations in winter [8]. Nest Site Selection and Territory Defense: Mountain bluebird territory type is Berger's type A: a large breeding area where courtship, copulation, nesting, and food seeking occur. In south-central Washington western bluebirds select and defend nest boxes soon after arrival but mountain bluebirds continue to prospect. Mountain bluebirds make nest box selection about 2 weeks after western bluebirds have established territory but mountain bluebird nest-building activity peaks 1 week earlier than that of western bluebird [29]. Mountain bluebirds and western bluebirds exhibit interspecific territoriality, as do mountain bluebirds and eastern bluebirds in areas of sympatry [45]. Interspecific attempts at displacement of resident birds at nest boxes are not usually successful [29]. In Montana pairs using nest boxes on fenceposts or utility poles mostly stayed along the fence or utility line and its immediate vicinity. The smallest territory was 100 yards (91 m) wide. Some territories had no clear boundaries [46]. Clutch Size and Incubation: Typical mountain bluebird clutch size is five or six eggs (range 3-8) [8,18,29]. Incubation, usually by the female, lasts 13 to 14 days [18]. Some of Bent's [8] contributors observed occasional incubation by the male. Development of Young: Mountain bluebird hatchlings are altricial, blind, and without feathers. Natal down appears on the second day. Eyes begin to open by the fourth or fifth day. Mountain bluebird nestlings are fed by both parents but usually only brooded by the female. Mountain bluebirds fledge at about 22 to 23 days but are not independent of parental feedings until 22 to 28 days after fledging [18]. Double-Brooding: Mountain bluebirds often raise a second brood in the same season [29]. Fall Migration: In Manitoba mountain bluebirds usually stay through late October [37]. In Montana large flocks of mountain bluebirds gather from October to November. These flocks usually stay together during seasonal movements and over the winter [46]. PREFERRED HABITAT : Mountain bluebirds normally occupy open woodland or edge habitat with exposed perches and fairly sparse ground cover [29,45]. They are attracted to burned areas, particularly with dead trees and/or snags present [32,39,40]. For more information on the relationship of mountain bluebirds to postfire environments see FIRE EFFECTS AND USE. Hutto and others [33] listed 19 studies reporting increased mountain bluebird populations in partially cut or clearcut forests. In northern Arizona ponderosa pine stands, mountain bluebirds were present on clearcut sites but not in light, medium, and heavily cut stands or in uncut stands [60]. In Utah mountain bluebirds are common summer residents of high valleys; they are uncommon winter visitors to lower valleys in southern Utah [25]. COVER REQUIREMENTS : Nesting: Mountain bluebirds often use abandoned woodpecker (Picidae) holes in dead or dying trees as nest holes [32,45]. Other cavities used for nesting include holes in dirt banks, abandoned swallow (Hirundae) nests, American dipper (Cinclus mexicanus) nests, hollow fenceposts, mailboxes, holes in buildings, and nest boxes [29]. Crevices in cliffs and mesas are also used [45]. Entrance hole orientation does not affect nest site use [44]. In western Montana mountain bluebirds use whitebark pine snags for nest sites at high elevations. At lower elevations western larch (Larix occidentalis) snags are preferred, even though Douglas-fir and lodgepole pine (Pinus contorta) snags are more abundant. Preferred sites are open or semi-open. Average diameter of four snags used by mountain bluebirds was 23 inches (58 cm); snag diameters ranged from 10 to 29 inches (25.4-74 cm) [40]. In Wyoming mountain bluebirds used an abandoned American dipper nest on the underside of a bridge. Mountain bluebirds frequently nest in river banks in the area [14]. Nest Boxes: In south-central Washington mountain bluebirds used nest boxes 0.3 mile (0.5 km) or more from ponderosa pine-Oregon white oak (Quercus garryana) stands, but also used nest boxes near trees. They showed less of a preference for nest box location than western bluebirds, which always used boxes near trees or other cover [29]. Foraging: Perches near open, well-lighted areas with sparse ground cover are favored foraging sites. Dead branches are preferred to living ones, presumably for greater prey visibility. Where natural vegetation is tall, mountain bluebirds prefer mowed to unmowed areas. Areas with dry, nonfertile soils, low vegetation, and much bare ground are preferred. Mountain bluebirds forage farther from perches than the other two bluebird species and are occasionally found in open areas with low perch densities [45]. FOOD HABITS : Mountain bluebirds are primarily insectivorous, but also consume fruit when insects are inactive (in early morning and in the cooler seasons). Contents of 66 adult mountain bluebird stomachs were 92 percent animal matter, which was 30 percent beetles, 23 percent grasshoppers, 14.5 percent caterpillars, 13 percent ants, 8 percent weevils, 4 percent bees and wasps, 4 percent true bugs, and less than 1 percent flies [7]. Insect Prey: In south-central Washington, beetle consumption decreased during the nestling period. Nestling foods are mostly grasshoppers, crickets, and caterpillars [29]. Plant Foods: Mountain bluebirds eat mistletoe (Phoradendron spp.), hackberry (Celtis spp.), Saskatoon serviceberry (Amelanchier alnifolia), and buffaloberry (Shepherdia spp.) berries in the nonbreeding season [61]. Foraging Strategies: Mountain bluebirds adjust foraging strategies to habitat and ground vegetation conditions [45]. Mountain bluebirds usually forage from elevated perches. When prey is spotted a mountain bluebird drops to the ground to capture it [29]. Mountain bluebirds hover in search of prey and have been observed foraging on the ground (hopping-gleaning) in grazed valleys with sparse vegetation [45]. PREDATORS : Mountain bluebirds are preyed upon by many raptors including Cooper's hawk (Accipiter cooperi), red-tailed hawk (Buteo jamaicensis), sharp-shinned hawk (A. striatus), northern harrier (Circus cyaneus), and possibly American kestrel (Falco sparverius). In addition, American crow (Corvus brachyrhynchos) may prey on eggs, nestlings, and adults. Adult mountain bluebirds are sometimes killed by house sparrows (Passer domesticus) in competition for nest sites; a deer mouse (Peromyscus maniculatus) was suspected in the death of an adult female mountain bluebird whose nest box she had usurped. Deer mice destroy eggs and nestlings in nest boxes, as do eastern chipmunks (Tamias striatus) and red squirrels (Tamiasciurus hudsonicus). Nestlings have also been destroyed by infestations of ants [37]. MANAGEMENT CONSIDERATIONS : Population Status and Trends: In the early 1900's the range of mountain bluebird expanded east into the Great Plains [45]. Herlugson [28] suggested that in this century, mountain bluebird has replaced western bluebird as the predominant bluebird in the Northwest. Changes in relative abundance of mountain bluebird and western bluebird in areas of sympatry are probably caused by changes in the openness of the landscape. Grazing reduces herb density and may benefit mountain bluebird at the expense of western bluebird. Mountain bluebird probably benefits more from logging than either eastern or western bluebird [45]. In Arizona Szaro [58] recorded the replacement of western bluebird by mountain bluebird following clearcutting in ponderosa pine forests. Sharp [54] indicated that mountain bluebird populations increased in juniper woodlands in Oregon between 1899 and 1983. Johnson [34] reported an increasing trend for mountain bluebird in Nevada between 1939 and 1973. DeSante and George [16], however, listed mountain bluebirds as decreasing in Alberta and Nevada in the last 100 years. In northern Idaho populations of secondary cavity nesters including mountain bluebird have been declining since the early 1970's as suitable breeding areas are lost to agricultural expansion [67]. Hejl [26] hypothesized that species associated with burns and/or snags, such as mountain bluebird, are less abundant than they were 100 years ago; nest site availability is a limiting factor in mountain bluebird productivity [29]. Nest-site Competition: Interspecific competition for nest cavities has probably contributed to the decline of some mountain bluebird populations in this century. Primary competitors include northern flicker (Cloaptes auratus), swallows, and, since their introduction from Europe, house sparrows and European starlings (Sturnus vulgaris) [18,29]. Competition with European starlings for nest sites has probably contributed to mountain bluebird population decline in Utah [25]. Nest boxes in south-central Washington are used by other species including violet-green swallows (Tachycinera thalassina), deer mice, and yellow-pine chipmunks (Tamias amoenus) [29]. Other nest-site competitors include eastern and western bluebirds in areas of sympatry, particularly in the Great Plains grasslands where eastern and mountain bluebirds have expanded their ranges [45]. Management Recommendations: Mountain bluebirds prefer open habitats; throughout their range they are always more abundant in recent clearcuts than in uncut forest [27]. In northern Utah mountain bluebirds were visitors on quaking aspen study sites prior to timber harvest but returned as breeders to clearcut areas. Apparently, clearcutting small patches provides more open habitat adjacent to uncut forest; this improves foraging habitat for mountain bluebirds while retaining sufficient numbers of cavities for nesting [15]. Also in Utah mountain bluebirds were only observed in a 17-year-old clearcut that had been bulldozed and broadcast burned after harvest. At the time of the census the stand consisted of lodgepole pine about 6 to 15 feet (1.8-4.6 m) tall with a moderately dense, forb-dominated ground cover. Mountain bluebirds were not observed in a 37-year-old clearcut, mature forest, stagnated forest, wet meadow, or dry meadow [5]. An unpublished report described by Astroth and Frischknecht [3] indicated that mountain bluebirds declined immediately after removal of pinyon (Pinus spp.)-juniper woodlands (for range improvement) but returned to pretreatment levels in 1 year. Szaro and Balda [59] suggested that for northern Arizona ponderosa pine communities, removal of one-sixth to two-thirds of available foliage either in strips or by thinning is not detrimental to breeding bird communities in terms of species richness, density, or diversity. The species present in disturbed communities are, however, different from those of undisturbed communities. Any management plan should consider the importance of snags for wildlife [39]. Hutto [32] emphasized the importance of snags for cavity nesters. It is generally recommended that all natural snags be left during timber harvest operations unless they pose immediate safety hazards [32,45,52]. Mature and decadent living trees should be left as well to provide snags in the future [45]. Salvage cutting of burned forest is detrimental to cavity nesting species, particularly woodpeckers and secondary cavity nesters such as mountain bluebirds [32]. McClelland and others [40] recommend leaving old-growth components within harvested areas. For example for every 1,000 acres (405 ha) management unit, they recommended leaving 50 to 100 acres (20-40.5 ha) uncut (old growth) for wildlife feeding areas; on the remaining acreage logs, snags, and cull trees should be left. Firewood cutting should be limited to snags less than 15 inches (38 cm) d.b.h. [40]. Nest Box Programs: Nest boxes resulted in a substantial increase in breeding mountain bluebird densities in northern Idaho study plots [67]. In south-central Washington nest box placements have also resulted in breeding density increases. Nest box fidelity is fairly high, particularly among successful breeders (68.2%). Unsuccessful breeders (5 individuals in this study) had a lower rate of nest box fidelity: two used the same box, one changed territory but not box type, and two changed territory and box type [30]. Nest boxes for mountain bluebirds in southwestern ponderosa pine forests should be placed along forest edges or in grassy glades within open forests. Mountain bluebirds use large nest boxes with 3-inch (7.6 cm) holes if no other sites are available [21]. REFERENCES : NO-ENTRY

FIRE EFFECTS AND USE

WILDLIFE SPECIES: Sialia currucoides
DIRECT FIRE EFFECTS ON ANIMALS : There are no reports of mountain bluebird mortality due to fire. Nests and nestlings are probably vulnerable to severe fire. Nesting cavities may be lost in severe fires including crown fires. HABITAT RELATED FIRE EFFECTS : Mountain bluebirds are strongly attracted to early postfire (1-2 years) communities, particularly those with many standing dead trees. Woodpecker activity in these communities provides many nest cavities [32]. Fire initiates a tree-hole nesting cycle in Grand Teton and Yellowstone National Parks. Woodpeckers concentrate in newly burned areas to feed on insects (particularly bark beetles) and to nest in standing dead trees [62], especially those with decay prior to fire [50]. Mountain bluebirds and other secondary cavity nesters use the holes after the woodpeckers abandon them. In northern Wyoming, northern three-toed woodpeckers (Picoides tridactylus) and black-backed three-toed woodpeckers (P. arcticus) begin leaving burned areas about 4 to 5 years after the fire. Hairy woodpeckers (P. villosus) continue to excavate holes for years, until snags finally decay to the point of falling down. At around 50 postfire years, tree-hole nesting species usually leave the area even if a few snags are still present [62]. A 1982 study in the Little Firehole River watershed within Yellowstone National Park indicated that mountain bluebirds were only common in a 222 acre (90 ha) area that burned in 1949. The authors speculated that mountain bluebird numbers were high in the late 1700's and early 1800's because up to 50 percent of the area was covered by early postfire stands; as forests matured into the twentieth century mountain bluebird numbers probably decreased [48]. In other areas of Yellowstone National Park, mountain bluebirds were observed in burned areas in the first postfire year [22]. Mountain bluebirds were associated with postfire plots in severely burned lodgepole pine stands in Yellowstone National Park. By the second postfire year mountain bluebirds were nesting in holes excavated by northern three-toed woodpeckers. Peak mountain bluebird breeding density occurred on 12-postfire year plots with a small peak on 30-year-old plots. There were no mountain bluebirds on 57-year-old and older plots [62]. In Grand Teton National Park, mountain bluebirds were present in the first postfire year on severely burned plots, increasing to 15 pairs per 100 acres (15/40 ha) in the second year. They were not observed on moderately burned or unburned plots, or on 43-year-old burned plots [62]. In Alberta fire-originated forests dominated by quaking aspen, balsam poplar (Populus balsamea), and lodgepole pine, mountain bluebirds were present in 14-year-old stands but not present in stands that had been clearcut, nor in 30-, 60-, or 80-year-old stands [66]. In Montana mountain bluebirds increased from postfire year 2 to postfire year 4 in both burned and burned and logged areas [24]. In California mountain bluebirds were observed in large numbers (15.2 pairs per 100 acres [15.2/40 ha]) in postfire years 5, 6, and 7 in mixed coniferous forest. Woodpecker activity was decreasing by the time of the study [10]. In the Sierra Nevada a severe fire occurred in a Jeffrey pine (Pinus jeffreyi)-white fir community in 1960. Birds were censused in 1968 and 1975. Mountain bluebird densities were highest on burned plots with standing dead trees and openings in 1968. They were still present on burned plots in 1975; these plots had developed dense brushfields [11]. Later postfire communities may not be as attractive as early successional stages; Raphael and others [47] noted a decreasing trend for mountain bluebirds in burned habitat in the Sierra Nevada between 1966 and 1985. In Yellowstone National Park mountain bluebirds densities 5 to 25 years after fire depend on the number of standing snags. At 25 to 30 postfire years mountain bluebird numbers may begin to decline depending on the rate of snag loss. From 30 to 50 postfire years mountain bluebirds depart as canopy closure develops [63]. Based on data from Brawn and Balda [13], Hejl [26] hypothesized a mountain bluebird population decrease in southwestern ponderosa pine due to fire exclusion and consequent closure of forests. FIRE USE : Savannas and open stands of mature pine are natural mountain bluebird habitats that require recurrent fire for maintenance. Prescribed fire is usually beneficial to mountain bluebirds, especially if it controls shrubs and understory trees [45]. Mountain bluebird densities 5 to 25 postfire years depend on the number of standing snags with nest cavities [63]. In Wyoming, mountain big sagebrush (Artemisia tridentata var. vaseyana) communities, bordered by Douglas-fir and quaking aspen stands, were burned with both spring and fall prescribed fires (not on the same plots). Mountain bluebirds were present as nonbreeders at higher densities on the burned plots than on unburned plots (both treatments) [41]. In Nevada pinyon-juniper woodlands burned with prescribed fire for 3 consecutive years, mountain bluebird populations were the same on burned and unburned plots in the first postfire year, but were higher on burned plots in the second year. Nest cavities were lost to the fire the first year, but by the second season cavity numbers were increasing [38]. Some bird species are eliminated from burned areas, but other species are attracted to them, creating a similar amount of species diversity [17]. Prescribed fire in Wind Cave National Park, South Dakota, temporarily improved foraging habitat for mountain bluebirds by reducing surface cover. There was little change in overall tree and snag density on these sites [12]. Burned areas less than 5 years old, particularly those that had severely burned, are highly valuable for many cavity nesting species including mountain bluebirds [62]. For enhancement of wildlife habitat it is strongly recommended that severely burned areas be allowed to develop naturally rather than be subject to salvage logging. When salvage is considered essential (for sanitary reasons or as a firebreak), it is recommended that a substantial area be left uncut rather than thinning the entire burn [32]. REFERENCES : NO-ENTRY

REFERENCES

WILDLIFE SPECIES: Sialia currucoides
REFERENCES : 1. American Ornithologists' Union. 1983. Checklist of North American birds. 6th ed. Lawrence, KS: Allen Press, Inc. 877 p. [21234] 2. American Ornithologists' Union. 1957. Checklist of North American birds. 5th ed. Baltimore, MD: The Lord Baltimore Press, Inc. 691 p. [21235] 3. Astroth, Kirk A.; Frischknecht, Neil C. 1984. Managing Intermountain rangelands--research on the Benmore Experimental Range, 1940-84. Gen. Tech, Rep. INT-175. Ogden, UT: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Intermountain Forest and Range Experiment Station. 44 p. [361] 4. Atwood, Jonathan L. 1994. Endangered small landbirds of the western United States. In: Jehl, Joseph R., Jr.; Johnson, Ned K., eds. A century of avifaunal change in western North America; Proceedings of an international symposium at the centennial meeting of the Cooper Ornithological Society; 1993 April 17; Sacramento, CA. Studies in Avian Biology No. 15. [Place of publication unknown]: Cooper Ornithological Society: 328-339. [24784] 5. Austin, Dennis D.; Perry, Michael L. 1979. Birds in six communities within a lodgepole pine forest. Journal of Forestry. 77: 584-586. [15622] 6. Bardon, Karl. 1991. Nesting mountain bluebirds. Loon. 63(3): 207-208. [24935] 7. Beal, F. E. L. 1915. Food of the robins and bluebirds of the United States. Bulletin No. 171. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Agriculture. 31 p. [24990] 8. Bent, Arthur Cleveland. 1964. Life histories of North American thrushes, kinglets, and their allies. New York: Dover Publications, Inc. 452 p. [24782] 9. Bernard, Stephen R.; Brown, Kenneth F. 1977. Distribution of mammals, reptiles, and amphibians by BLM physiographic regions and A.W. Kuchler's associations for the eleven western states. Tech. Note 301. Denver, CO: U.S. Department of the Interior, Bureau of Land Management. 169 p. [434] 10. Bergeron, Jean-Marie; Jodoin, Louise. 1989. Patterns of resource use, food quality, and health status of voles (Microtus pennsylvanicus) trapped from fluctuating populations. Oecologia. 79: 306-314. [24928] 11. Bock, Carl E.; Raphael, Martin; Bock, Jane H. 1978. Changing avian community structure during early post-fire succession in the Sierra Nevada. Wilson Bulletin. 90(1): 119-123. [16029] 12. Bone, Steven D.; Klukas, Richard W. 1990. Prescribed fire in Wind Cave National Park. In: Alexander, M. E.; Bisgrove, G. F., technical coordinators. The art and science of fire management: Proceedings, 1st Interior West Fire Council annual meeting and workshop; 1988 October 24-27; Kananaskis Village, AB. Inf. Rep. NOR-X-309. Edmonton, AB: Forestry Canada, Northwest Region, Northern Forestry Centre: 297-302. [14145] 13. Brawn, Jeffrey D.; Balda, Russell P. 1988. Population biology of cavity nesters in northern Arizona: do nest sites limit breeding densities?. Condor. 90: 61-71. [24926] 14. Calder, William A. 1970. Use of dipper nest by mountain bluebird. Condor. 72(4): 498. [24988] 15. DeByle, Norbert V. 1981. Songbird populations and clearcut harvesting of aspen in northern Utah. Res. Note INT-302. Ogden, UT: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Intermountain Forest and Range Experiment Station. 7 p. [5398] 16. DeSante, David F.; George, T. Luke. 1994. Population trends in the landbirds of western North America. In: Jehl, Joseph R., Jr.; Johnson, Ned K., eds. A century of avifaunal change in western North America; Proceedings of an international symposium at the centennial meeting of the Cooper Ornithological Society; 1993 April 17; Sacramento, CA. Studies in Avian Biology No. 15. [Place of publication unknown]: 173-190. [24783] 17. Despain, Don G. 1978. Effects of natural fires in Yellowstone National Park. Information Paper No. 34. [Place of publication unknown]: U.S. Department of the Interior, National Park Service, Yellowstone National Park. 2 p. [15670] 18. 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