Haddad Lab at NC State
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Nick Haddad


Atrytonopsis
Wetland at Ft. Bragg created by beaver

Amphibian pond
Ephemeral pond used for breeding
by rare amphibians (photo courtesy of Endangered Species Branch)


SERDP Group Website

Publications




Connectivity for Rare Animals in Longleaf Pine Woodlands


Historically, longleaf pine woodlands covered much of the southeastern United States.  These woodlands were harvested and the land converted to agriculture.  Now, longleaf pine woodlands cover just a few percent of their former extent, and woodlands that remain are isolated to federal (often military) lands and state parks and reserves.  Longleaf pine woodlands also provide habitat for many rare species, including red-cockaded woodpeckers.  Recovery of these rare species depends on expanding their populations.  One approach to accomplish this goal is to connect large fragments of longleaf pine woodland with corridors.

Our group is working on two projects to assess connectivity in longleaf pine woodlands.  In the sandhills of North Carolina, we are working with a team that includes researchers from NC State, UNC-Chapel Hill, Duke, and Virginia Tech to evaluate the use of corridors by a a number of rare animal species.  These animals, including red-cockaded woodpeckers, St. Francis satyr butterflies, Tiger salamanders, and Carolina gopher frogs, all have very different habitat needs, but may use longleaf pine woodlands for some part of their life cycles.  Our research focuses on their dispersal behaviors to determine whether corridors may be effective for restoring connectivity from military bases to other public lands.  The ultimate goal of the work will be to determine if we can identify optimal corridors that provide connectivity for multiple species of rare animals.

The second study of connectivity in longleaf pine woodlands focuses on the restoration of plant species at the Savannah River Site (SRS).  This research will use results from the SRS Corridor Experiment to predict the effects of corridors on plant population distributions across large landscapes.  We'll then test predictions by surveying patches of longleaf pine woodland that vary in connectivity across the Savannah River Site.

Our research on connectivity in longleaf pine woodlands is funded by DoD, Department of the Army, Endangered Species Branch at Ft. Bragg and the Strategic Environmental Research and Development Program, the National Science Foundation, and the US Forest Service/Savannah River
© Nick Haddad