In British Columbia, 80 species of birds, mammals and amphibians depend on wildlife trees (dead or dying trees with special characteristics such as size, condition and species) for nesting, denning, feeding, perching or roosting. Some of these species, including the Williamson?s Sapsucker (Sphyrapicus thyroideus) the Vancouver Island Pygmy-Owl (Glaucidium gnoma swarthi) and the QCI Hairy Woodpecker (Picoides villosus picoideus), are on the provincial endangered or threatened status lists. Our largest primary cavity excavator, the Pileated Woodpecker (Dryocopus pileatus), is considered an important keystone species in forested ecosystems throughout the province (i.e., its nest and roost cavities provide habitat for numerous secondary cavity using birds and mammals). In some areas of B.C., especially where forest harvesting has been practiced for many years and second-growth stands are predominant, or where ecosystem restoration may be required (e.g., riparian rehabilitation), there is often a shortage of suitable wildlife tree habitat. Healthy, second-growth stands containing trees from 50-100 years of age can still take many decades before developing the primary wildlife tree attribute of heart rot. However, this natural process can be significantly accelerated through fungal inoculation. Consequently, an operational trial to create wildlife trees in second-growth Douglas-fir stands using fungal inoculation was initiated in TFL 44 (southwest Vancouver Island, B.C.) during 2002. Partial cutting (variable retention) silvicultural systems are being implemented, where biodiversity and retention of stand structure are among the management objectives. prepared for Weyerhaeuser Coastal Group.
Manning, E. Todd. 2003. Fungal inoculation of trees as a habitat enhancement tool in second-growth forests: TFL 44 operational trial 2002 (year 1) progress report. Forest Investment Account (FIA) - Forest Science Program. Forest Investment Account Report. FIA2003MR009