Wildlife Ecology and Conservation in Forest Habitats

A special issue of Forests (ISSN 1999-4907). This special issue belongs to the section "Forest Ecology and Management".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 30 June 2024 | Viewed by 2083

Special Issue Editors


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Guest Editor
Department of General Biology and Ecology, Faculty of Biotechnology and Biology, National Research Mordovia State University, Bolshevistskaya Str. 68, Saransk 430005, Russia
Interests: nature-based solutions; animals of forests; theriology; animal ecology; urban and peri-urban forests

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Guest Editor
School of Natural Sciences and Mathematics, Ferrum College, Ferrum, VA 24088, USA
Interests: wildlife; forestry; forest ecology; silviculture; biodiversity; forest regeneration
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Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Ecology and wildlife conservation in forest habitats is very interesting. This research topic can be considered as multifunctional connections of organisms in the perspective of their conservation. For this, the number and density of organisms in the habitat, as well as the influence of human activity on them, is absolutely important. Of course, in forest habitats, disparate adaptations occur in different species of organisms. The variety and peculiarities of research methods allow us to properly study the ecological connections of animals and plants with other organisms. All these approaches rely on biodiversity and types of relationships to solve global natural problems, while simultaneously providing environmental, social, and economic prospects and helping to increase the sustainability of forest ecosystems. However, for the effective protection of wildlife, it is necessary to introduce new approaches and update existing views in order to eliminate several gaps in research. This Special Issue welcomes studies containing new data and methods related to quantification in the conservation of entire natural complexes or individual species in natural forest or suburban habitats. Original research and reviews aimed at understanding the key characteristics of forest communities that contribute to obtaining numerous advantages, potential limitations, and trade-offs in wildlife conservation are especially welcome.

Dr. Alexey Andreychev
Dr. Todd Fredericksen
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Forests is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2600 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • forest management and restoration
  • impact of forests on the conservation of organisms
  • number and density of forest animals
  • wildlife conservation
  • adaptations of organisms
  • human influence on wildlife

Published Papers (3 papers)

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Research

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14 pages, 566 KiB  
Article
Alien vs. Native—Influence of Fallow Deer (Dama dama) Introduction on the Native Roe Deer (Capreolus capreolus) Population
by Jakub Gryz, Dagny Krauze-Gryz and Karolina D. Jasińska
Forests 2024, 15(6), 1014; https://doi.org/10.3390/f15061014 - 11 Jun 2024
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Abstract
Fallow deer is one of the most widespread alien mammals in Europe. We documented the response of the roe deer population shortly after the fallow deer was introduced to a hunting ground in central Poland. Mean roe density dropped from 17.6 ind./100 ha [...] Read more.
Fallow deer is one of the most widespread alien mammals in Europe. We documented the response of the roe deer population shortly after the fallow deer was introduced to a hunting ground in central Poland. Mean roe density dropped from 17.6 ind./100 ha to 10.5 ind./100 ha after the alien species was introduced. In the reference area, where fallow deer was absent, the roe deer density did not change in the analogue study period. At both study sites, mean roe deer productivity before fallow deer introduction was similar (1.6 juv./female). However, in the first study area, the productivity dropped to 1.4, while in the reference study area, it slightly increased to 1.75. The presence of fallow deer influenced roe deer space use negatively, i.e., the number of pellet groups of roe deer decreased with an increase in the number of fallow deer feces. Overall, the introduction of the fallow deer was successful and the population grew quickly. Yet, the economic impact of its introduction was far from satisfactory. At the same time, its negative influence on the roe deer was apparent. This shows that the fallow deer is an alien species threatening local biodiversity. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Wildlife Ecology and Conservation in Forest Habitats)
19 pages, 6934 KiB  
Article
The Impacts of Sunlight on the Lichen Scots Pine Forest Community
by Patrycja Fałowska, Patrycja Dziurowicz, Karolina Waszkiewicz, Paulina Wietrzyk-Pełka and Michał Hubert Węgrzyn
Forests 2024, 15(4), 675; https://doi.org/10.3390/f15040675 - 9 Apr 2024
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Abstract
The habitat of the lichen Scots pine forest is currently one of the communities that requires attention and active protection due to its rapid disappearance. In our study, we identified factors that can be modified to preserve this habitat. The primary focus of [...] Read more.
The habitat of the lichen Scots pine forest is currently one of the communities that requires attention and active protection due to its rapid disappearance. In our study, we identified factors that can be modified to preserve this habitat. The primary focus of our research was on the significance of tree height and sunlight in fostering the development of a lichen-rich layer within the lichen Scots pine forest. Additionally, we investigated the environmental factors influencing the presence of specific species of lichens and bryophytes, including those that form communities and those that displace species characteristic of the lichen Scots pine forest community. Our study was conducted in Bory Tucholskie National Park (N-W Poland) using 20 experimental sites and 248 point-frame plots from spring 2021 to winter 2022. Fieldwork involved species surveys, measurements of photosynthetic activity in lichens and bryophytes, and collection of environmental data. Through parametric testing, modeling, and mapping, our main findings confirmed that light availability, influenced by tree height, is a critical factor in maintaining a well-preserved lichen-rich layer and facilitating habitat reintroduction. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Wildlife Ecology and Conservation in Forest Habitats)
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Review

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22 pages, 3520 KiB  
Review
Roe Deer, Lithuania’s Smallest and Most Abundant Cervid
by Linas Balčiauskas
Forests 2024, 15(5), 767; https://doi.org/10.3390/f15050767 - 27 Apr 2024
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Abstract
A review of 113 scientific and other publications on the smallest and most abundant deer in Lithuania, the roe deer (Capreolus capreolus), is presented, along with an analysis based on compound annual population growth rates of population numbers, hunting bags, and [...] Read more.
A review of 113 scientific and other publications on the smallest and most abundant deer in Lithuania, the roe deer (Capreolus capreolus), is presented, along with an analysis based on compound annual population growth rates of population numbers, hunting bags, and roadkill. This review covers the species’ history in the country from the last glaciation onwards, the changes in numbers from 1934 to 2023, hunting bag changes from 1965 to 2022, roadkill numbers from 2002 to 2022, data on roe deer reproduction, habitat selection, genetic diversity, pathogens, and damage to forest stands. It also provides an overview of species management and selection for trophies. Despite the exponential increase in roe deer numbers since 1990 and the dominance of this species in roadkill, even on urban roads, the number and density of animals and the damage they cause to forest stands are relatively low compared to other European countries. Within the observed period, drops in numbers were related to harsh winters in 1969/1970 and 1995/1996. Poaching, especially coinciding with weakened enforcement during the period of political–economic transition in the early 1990s, has also had a negative impact on population numbers, as have recent increases in the number of large predators. Population growth over the recent period does not correlate with hunting mortality, which has remained stable at an average of 16.9% since 2002. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Wildlife Ecology and Conservation in Forest Habitats)
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