Seasonal area of use and habitat selection by female wild turkeys in response to prescribed fire in a managed longleaf pine savanna in southwestern Georgia
Perez, Christina Michelle
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I examined seasonal space use and habitat selection by female wild turkeys on 2 study areas in southwestern Georgia and related them to prescribed fire. Females selected mature pine and pine-hardwood stands burned 1 year earlier or not burned ≥4 years when they established seasonal areas of use. Within seasonal areas of use, females used pine plantations and mature pine stands more than were available, and stands burned during the current year or 2 years earlier were used more than expected. Additionally, I used a distance analysis to evaluate the immediate effect of prescribed fires on habitat use by comparing turkey locations 10 days before a fire to 10 days after a fire and found that females were significantly farther from burned stands post-fire. My results can assist land managers in implementing fire return intervals to create habitats required by female turkeys within the longleaf pine-wiregrass ecosystem.