Which species should be monitored to indicate ecological sustainability in Australian forest management?
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Rodney P. Kavanagh, Richard H. Loyn, Geoffrey C. Smith, Robert J. Taylor, Peter C. Catling, 2004. "Which species should be monitored to indicate ecological sustainability in Australian forest management?", Conservation of Australia's Forest Fauna, Daniel Lunney
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This paper summarises the key findings of a study that investigated the feasibility of developing a practical, sensitive and cost-effective approach to the implementation of Montreal Process Indicator 1.2c for monitoring populations of representative species for forest management. Representative species include those for which a significant change in population levels have a high likelihood of indicating a significant change in populations of other species. This focus on populations of individual species, in addition to habitat surrogates, is needed because managers require confirmation that their actions are having the desired effect and because factors other than habitat availability may interact to account for the size of populations. The study produced 13 collaborative reports and research papers. These included literature reviews identifying species (vertebrates, invertebrates and vascular plants) known to be, or potentially, sensitive to logging in south-eastern Australia, and reviews of the potential for species and functional groups to serve as bio-indicators in monitoring programmes. The study also categorised plant and animal species in terms of their known or suspected sensitivity to logging. Using large retrospective (space-for-time) datasets from Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria and Tasmania, the study analysed correlations between species across a wide range of taxa, and the frequencies of occurrence or abundance of species in relation to logging intensity or time since logging. Principles for consideration in the design of monitoring programmes were proposed and discussed, and a new method (videography) for remotely-sensing habitat (forest structure) attributes important for ground-dwelling mammals (and potentially other fauna) was demonstrated.