Fisher Habitat Fieldtrip
Wayne Spencer and Susan Antenen, two CBI senior scientists, participated in a fisher denning habitat and fuels management field tour in the Sierra National Forest with researchers from the Sierra Nevada Adaptive Management Program (SNAMP) fisher project, US Forest Service staff and various stakeholder representatives.
Wayne presented a brief overview of CBI's fisher denning habitat model, which researchers and USFS are using to guide research and management decisions. New den data show that the CBI model works well at predicting where fisher natal and maternal dens may be located, and can be used to validate the model. Female fishers select denning sties from a very narrow range of available habitats, restricted to mostly very dense mixed coniferous stands with large trees in lower elevation portions of their home range where there is also an intermix with black oaks.
Foresters can use this information to avoid implementing vegetation treatments (thinning or harvest) in high-probability denning habitats during the denning season (March-June) and hopefully to avoid adversely affecting den structures or the microhabitats they occur within.