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1 May 2018 The Impacts of Native-Grassland Restoration on Raptors and their Prey on a Reclaimed Surface Mine in Kentucky
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Abstract

We evaluated the effects of native-grass restoration on the spatial distribution and density of raptors, vegetative characteristics, and small-mammal communities at Peabody Wildlife Management Area, a large reclaimed surface-coal mine in western Kentucky. We surveyed raptors from 2008 to 2012 via distance sampling at roadside points, and conducted vegetation and small-mammal surveys. We found no associations between total small-mammal relative abundance and native-grass restoration or vegetative characteristics. However, management for native grass positively affected the density of Circus cyaneus (Northern Harrier) and influenced the local distribution of Northern Harriers and Buteo jamaicensis (Red-Tailed Hawk). These results suggest that restoration and management of native grass on reclaimed mine lands can enhance habitat for grassland raptors, including the Northern Harrier, a species of conservation concern throughout its range.

Kate G. Slankard, Danna L. Baxley, and Gary L. Sprandel "The Impacts of Native-Grassland Restoration on Raptors and their Prey on a Reclaimed Surface Mine in Kentucky," Northeastern Naturalist 25(2), 277-290, (1 May 2018). https://doi.org/10.1656/045.025.0211
Published: 1 May 2018
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