The northern goshawk (Accipiter gentilis) has been the subject of considerable interest because of the impact of logging on this species' nesting habitat. However, few studies have examined movements of fledgling birds around the nest prior to independence, and even fewer have described resource requirements of young birds during their postfledging period. Over 3 years, we followed 31 radiotagged goshawk fledglings from 15 nests in southeastern British Columbia, Canada. Of these birds, 26 survived to disperse. Between fledging and dispersal 95% of fledgling relocations (n = 1,148) were within 450 m of the nest. Fledglings primarily remained within 298 m of the nest during the first 21 days postfledging and within 525 m of the nest between 21 days postfledging and dispersal. Fledglings' movements were highly directional, with individual and sibling movements away from any particular nest tending out in one direction. Postfledging areas averaged 36.7 ha in size (median = 23.1, inter-quartile range = 20.8–39.7 ha). Fledglings strongly avoided forest <40 years old and weakly selected young forests (40–80 yr), mature forests (>80 yr), and stands with >40% canopy cover during the first 21 days and after. We suggest forest managers wishing to conserve goshawk postfledging areas in the interior montane forests of British Columbia maintain forests >40 years old with high crown closure covering an area ≥21 ha and preferably >40 ha. This area should contain all identified occupied and alternative nest trees in a nest area. At least half this area should be forest >80 years old and contain existing nests and potential for future nest trees.
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Vol. 74 • No. 8