Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Units Program: Oklahoma
Education, Research and Technical Assistance for Managing Our Natural Resources

Cavalieri, V. S., T. J. O'Connell, and D. M. Leslie, Jr. 2009. A bird community on the edge: habitat use of forest songbirds in eastern Oklahoma. Proceedings of the Fourth International Partners in Flight Conference: Tundra to Tropic 4:118-127.


Several species of forest songbirds reach a western limit of their respective distributions in eastern Oklahoma. The relative infl uence of various habitat variables on patterns of occurrence in this region may differ from those same infl uences in the core of species’ ranges. We examined the infl uence of 16 habitat variables on the occurrence and density of a suite of forest songbirds. We sampled breeding birds with four, fi xed-radius point counts along 1-km transects at 75 forested sites in eastern Oklahoma in 2006. Forest cover at fi ne scales varied by numerous structural characteristics (e.g., canopy cover) as well as species composition (e.g., pines vs. hardwoods). We performed both Detrended Correspondence Analysis (DCA) and Canonical Correspondence Analysis (CCA) ordinations using 16 environmental variables and 37 bird species to examine bird habitat relationships. Forward Selection in CCA indicated that the most important environmental variables affecting bird habitat relationships were the amount of forest cover in the surrounding landscape matrix, and at a local scale, canopy height and elevation.