The snags are gone
23 Oct 2017, 6:02 PM,
#1
The snags are gone
A set of three snags have been on San Francisco Street opposite the hospital for a long time, and they have provided nesting cavities for Lewis's Woodpeckers during that time. These snags have also provided Lewis's Woodpeckers for the Flagstaff: Mt. Elden CBC for the past 20 years (not every year, but most).

The snags are gone. So sad.
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23 Oct 2017, 6:41 PM,
#2
RE: The snags are gone
Snags are a very important component of the nesting habitat of many species of birds.  NAU even hosted an international snag symposium in the mid-80s that showed how critical snags are in the forest.  I'm not saying this is why these snags were removed but now, unfortunately, many look at snags solely as fire hazards or eyesores.
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23 Oct 2017, 9:06 PM,
#3
RE: The snags are gone
We lost a bunch at the Kachina Wetlands last year as well. I'm not sure I saw one kestrel out there this year.
Brian
bhealyphoto@gmail.com
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23 Oct 2017, 10:47 PM,
#4
RE: The snags are gone
(23 Oct 2017, 6:41 PM)John Coons Wrote: Snags are a very important component of the nesting habitat of many species of birds.  NAU even hosted an international snag symposium in the mid-80s that showed how critical snags are in the forest.  I'm not saying this is why these snags were removed but now, unfortunately, many look at snags solely as fire hazards or eyesores.

I've heard it said that a dead tree supports more life than a live one. Urban snags are sometimes removed for liability concerns (eventually, dead trees do fall) but also often from ill-informed and overzealous management practices.

This ailing but not quite dead sycamore was felled (in a state park) while bluebird nesting was in progress, to spend the budget before the next cycle.
   
Sensationally, the parents continued to feed the survivors and fledged 3 young.
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25 Oct 2017, 8:23 PM,
#5
RE: The snags are gone
When I worked for the USFS in Minnesota we would purposely leave snags for wildlife. Not sure if that knowledge has been used for management here..
Brian
bhealyphoto@gmail.com
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26 Oct 2017, 8:41 AM,
#6
RE: The snags are gone
(25 Oct 2017, 8:23 PM)bhealyphoto Wrote: When I worked for the USFS in Minnesota we would purposely leave snags for wildlife. Not sure if that knowledge has been used for management here..

The USFS does not cut snags here unless they pose a threat around campgrounds and other places where there are a lot of visitors.
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26 Oct 2017, 10:01 AM,
#7
RE: The snags are gone
There is a snag at Short Pond, about 10 ft tall - natural break off, that has been used by Pygmy Nuthatches and Flickers for several years.  Managers could modify their cuttings to leave short snags which could still be used for nesting.
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27 Oct 2017, 6:35 AM,
#8
RE: The snags are gone
(26 Oct 2017, 8:41 AM)jocrouse Wrote:
(25 Oct 2017, 8:23 PM)bhealyphoto Wrote: When I worked for the USFS in Minnesota we would purposely leave snags for wildlife. Not sure if that knowledge has been used for management here..

The USFS does not cut snags here unless they pose a threat around campgrounds and other places where there are a lot of visitors.

That's good!
Brian
bhealyphoto@gmail.com
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24 Jan 2018, 8:56 AM,
#9
RE: The snags are gone
As an FYI - there are still some snags at the bottom of the hill along the drainage (corner of San Fran and Forest) that are viewable from Forest.  There was a pair of breeding Lewis' in one of these snags last summer and perhaps they'll be there again this year.  I didn't see any Lewis' in the area on my way into work this morning, but it was relatively quiet bird-wise.

Anne
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29 Jan 2018, 10:15 AM,
#10
RE: The snags are gone
Tangentially related on snags: the county did a lot of thinning at Fort Tuthill park this fall. They took out almost every snag along the Soldier's Loop trail--many of the snags were just left on the ground. Charitably, I could imagine that this was some sort of poorly motivated pro-active means to keep snags from falling across the trail, but some of those snags were not near the trail, and others were quite small and posed little risk. I think it's just more likely that the folks who run the park were ignorant about the value of snags (and their minimal influence on fire behavior), and the contractor that did the logging was happy to comply.
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