We investigated habitat association of sympatric red-tailed hawks (Buteo jamaicensis) and northern goshawks (Accipiter gentilis) at 2 spatial scales centered on nest sites: (1) fine-scale patterns of forest structure and topography within 16-m radius circles (0.08 ha), and (2) midscale patterns of forested and nonforested areas, forest fragmentation, and topography within 2,085-m-radius circles (1,367 ha). Nonforested areas were defined as any area lacking >20% canopy closure within a 30 × 30-m cell. At both scales, red-tailed hawk associations were more variable and goshawk associations less variable. At the fine scale, goshawks were consistently associated with open understories, tall trees, and gentle slopes (x̄ = 9.6°, SD = 6.9) while red-tailed hawks were associated, on average, with steep, north-facing slopes (x̄ = 17.4°, SD = 8.1) and dense understories. At the midscale, goshawks were consistently associated with patches of continuous forest and level terrain within 645 m of nest sites. Red-tailed hawks were associated with nonforested areas located within 105–645 m of nest sites and steep slopes within 105 m of nest sites. Forest fragmentation was greater around red-tailed hawk nest sites, and forested regions were more aggregated around goshawk nest sites when compared with the other species. These patterns indicate that on the Kaibab Plateau, red-tailed hawks will gain habitat at the midscale and goshawks will lose habitat at both scales if forests are fragmented and mature forest structure is lost.
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Vol. 68 • No. 2